Greenhouse Canada

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Canada a growing market for ‘Certified’ group


September 12, 2013
By Dave Harrison

Sept. 12, 2013, Bellevue, WA — Canadian membership in Certified Greenhouse Farmers (CGF) is growing.

Sept. 12, 2013, Bellevue, WA — Canadian membership in Certified Greenhouse Farmers (CGF) is growing.

Six new members from British Columbia have joined CGF.

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• BJ Farms of Abbotsford.

• Canadian Valley Growers of Aldergrove.

• Delta View Farms of Delta.

• Peppertree Farms of Abbotsford.

• Sunnybay Greenhouse of Delta.

• Millennium Pacific of Delta.
 
CGF is expected to grow to over 50 greenhouse operations in Canada, Mexico and the United States this year.

“Our growth continues as we work to distinguish vegetable greenhouse production from other systems by clearly defining growing standards and practices for this innovative industry,” says CGF president Ed Beckman.

To become a member of CGF, producers must meet the strict definition for controlled-environment greenhouses as well as undergo a rigorous, third-party audit against the association’s standards. 

These standards include structural and environmental controls, food safety, water resource management, integrated pest management procedures, ecosystem management and integrated waste management.
 
After passing the certification audit, members can place a CGF seal on their products and packaging.

“The investment that these greenhouse growers must make requires them to differentiate their production systems and that means coming together, speaking with a unified voice and joining with other producers who share their vision,” says Beckman.

CGF addresses international trade, pest management, phytosanitary, and regulatory issues for its members.
 
“With interests in Canada, Mexico and the United States, the organization seeks harmonization of those issues which impact farmers who grow or market greenhouse vegetables in these countries,” Beckman says.

“An example is our coordinated effort with regional grower organizations in Canada to ensure that we have a uniform definition for greenhouse-grown vegetables.”

Interest in the organization has been strong across Canada.

“We’ll continue to see growth in Canada, Mexico and the U.S. in 2013 as growers seek certification now in advance of the 2014 marketing season,” Beckman says. 

“For example, Sun Select, a major greenhouse pepper grower in British Columbia that is expanding into California, has applied for membership and will undergo certification audits this fall.” 

Beckman reminds retailers to monitor the CGF website for member additions and certification status of pending members.

Current CGF membership acreage is 1,400 acres.   


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