In recent years companies in every conceivable industry have been touting sustainable practices. “We care, we share, we act in the interests of the earth,” but in the produce industry these ideas are nothing new. In fact, environmental practices have been a key factor of survival for as long as farmers have been planting and harvesting crops. For if we collectively hadn’t cared for the nutrient-dense soil, the limited water resources, and our dedicated work force, this industry would not continue to produce the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that we do, year in, year out.
Stewardship of the land is a critical part of every job title in the agriculture industry. At Markon, we made it a prerequisite from our inception in 1985, to partner only with those growers who walk the talk and live these practices for all of our benefit. This is because we believe stewardship of the land and profitability are not mutually exclusive, and that success does not have to compromise the needs of future generations.
Practices such as crop rotation, energy conservation, waste and water reduction, and recycling are standard operating procedures for Markon, our member companies, and our grower-partners. We are also taking action by converting to greener modes of delivery, reducing production and transportation emissions, decreasing shipping mileage through detailed delivery routes, increasing our organic and free-trade product lines, and contributing excess product to food banks and nonprofit organizations. Because Markon’s members span the North American continent and account for more than $24 billion in annual sales, we have significant power to make changes throughout the food chain. Together, we are working to define and implement an ever-growing list of sustainable endeavors that will ensure that all of the fertile growing areas we source continue to thrive.