Sustainability

Sustainability:

Sustainability

SustainabiltyF&S Produce is a leader in environmental sustainability and corporate social responsibility, and has extensive programs in place to renew our land, and reduce, re-use and recycle our materials. Our comprehensive strategy has led to a six-prong approach of innovative initiatives in vegetative waste composting, water usage restrictions, energy usage restrictions, recycling programs, local sourcing and organic production. A summary of our successes are as follows:

  1. Vegetative waste composting
    • We compost about 30 million pounds of self-generated fruit and vegetable waste each year, such as fruit and vegetable peels, cores, seeds, scraps, and material with decay. In our green, sustainable practice, we utilize this material and plow this into over 330 acres of company-owned farmland, enriching the soil and adding organic matter. We also bring in vegetative waste from other local processors and compost this as well, as a service to our community. Our composting operation reduces the need for chemical fertilizers, and allows us to not require having to dump this material into landfills, and is a great benefit to the environment.
    • We have an extensive soil conservation plan in place, in conjunction with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, which reduces the need for addition of fertilizers and other soil nutrients, and reduces sanitary landfill requirements.
  2. Water Usage restrictions
    • We have installed 224 subsurface water seepage pits to replenish the aquifer with water used in our vegetable and fruit processing operations. This innovative solution has resulted in an 85% reduction in consumptive water usage to the environment
    • We have also improved wastewater discharge quality by adding a 500,000 gallon tank that dramatically reduces the solids that are returned to the soil.
  3. Energy Usage restrictions
    • We have converted plant lighting in our facilities to high efficiency fluorescent lighting systems.
    • We use high-efficiency transportation vehicles that result in idle time reduction and lower energy usage.
    • We have installed aerodynamic skirts on our trailers, that decrease drag and improve our fuel efficiency.
  4. Recycling Programs
    • We have a comprehensive program to recycle cardboard that originates from our raw material suppliers. Cardboard is bundled and used for general paper recycling, and waxed-cardboard is bundled and used for manufacturing of fireplace logs.
    • We select packaging materials used in our fruit and vegetable products that can be actively recycled in community programs
    • We select packaging materials used in our fruit and vegetable products that can be actively recycled in community programs
    • We also maintain a crew on-site that repairs wooden farm totes and pallets that are used in our operations. Wood is a renewable resource, and its continued use and reuse reduces the need for petroleum-based plastic pallets.
    • We also recycle barrels and drums so that can be used for rain-water collection barrels for community uses.
  5. Local Sourcing and Food Miles Focus
    • We utilize over 100 million pounds of agricultural raw materials each year to supply our operations, but we actively source local raw materials whenever we can. We typically bring in about 30% of our needs from local New Jersey farms each year.
    • We also have implemented effective programs to control our inbound logistics, maximize our loads, and minimize the number of trailers on the road. We also utilize rail when possible, which reduces the amount of energy needed to haul our inbound raw materials.
    • We also utilize our own fleet for outbound shipments and have an effective program to maximize our loads, minimize the number of trailers on the road, and backhaul ingredients and/or other products as a service to our customers.
  6. Organic Production
    • As a service to our customers, F&S Produce is able to offer a wide variety of organic vegetables and fruits, for retail, industrial, or foodservice use. F&S operates under the USDA Organic Certification Program, under the direction of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) Division of Marketing and in compliance with guidelines established by the National Organic Standards Board. We currently process about 1.5 million pounds/yr.

Our leadership in environmental sustainability and corporate social responsibility was recently featured in a local newspaper, and this article can be read by clicking here.

F&S Sustainability

F&S Sustainability

F&S Featured as Cover Story in Fresh Cut Magazine

F&S Produce’s was recently featured as the cover story in Fresh Cut Magazine.

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F&S Featured for Comittment to Employee Training

F&S was recently featured for our commitment to employee training.

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SQF Level 3 Certified

F&S was again certified as SQF 200 Level 3

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F&S Receives Prestigious Business Character Award

F&S receives prestigious Business Character Award from Red Book Credit Services, given to the most respected firms in the produce industry

© 2011 F&S Produce Company.