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Mastronardi Produce certifies fifth operation through EFI


September 17, 2020
By Equitable Food Initiative

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EFI-certified SUNSET tomatoes include the Responsibly Grown, Farmworker Assured label

Mastronardi Produce has certified its fifth operation through Equitable Food Initiative (EFI). This certification makes Mastronardi one of four companies to have certified five or more operations.

EFI is a non-profit certification and skill-building organization that partners with growers and retailers to create a more transparent food chain, safer food and healthier places to work. The organization mandates over 300 standards including labour conditions, food safety and pest management at all levels of farming. EFI-certified product is can be labelled “Responsibly Grown, Farmworker Assured.”

Mastronardi’s first EFI certification was for its Kingsville, Ontario, farm in Canada. Its four other certified greenhouses are located in Mexico, and the latest certification is for one of the company’s farms in the Tepanco de Lopez region of Puebla, Mexico.

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“Organizations that commit multiple locations to EFI certification truly see the value in organizational change throughout the business,” said LeAnne Ruzzamenti, director of marketing communications for EFI. “These handful of organizations that have committed to earning multiple EFI certifications do so because they have seen firsthand how workforce development fosters improved communication, food safety and innovation.”

Mastronardi’s culture is focused on sustainability and social responsibility. For the past 11 years, it has been named as one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies. Mastronardi most recently announced plans to offer 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging for all fruits and vegetables by 2025.

“It is very important to us to do everything we can in the sustainability and social responsibility fronts,” said Kevin Safrance, chief operating officer of Mastronardi Produce. “For us, a partnership with EFI is not a one-off tactic that checks a box; rather it is our 365 mindset. We’re glad to have a partner that provides tools to help our company continue to achieve next-level success.”

Selling under the Sunset brand, Mastronardi is one of North America’s largest greenhouse operators, producing and selling tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, baby eggplants and berries.