July 8, 2008, Bellingham, WA — The North American Greenhouse/Hothouse Vegetable Growers (NAGHVG), an association formed after three years of research and review to protect and support superior standards of excellence in food safety and quality, has developed its own certification standards. The NAGHVG was founded by five leading North American greenhouse growers:
• Winset Farms.
• Village Farms.
• Eurofresh Farms.
• Houweling’s Hot House.
• Gipaanda Greenhouses.
Along with the logos of the NAGHVG founders, the “Certified Greenhouse” logo informs consumers and retailers that what they are buying has been produced using the safest possible growing technique – certified greenhouse grown.
“Certified Greenhouse” standards for the members include:
• Every aspect of the growing process is monitored and controlled, from irrigation to climate control and growing medium.
• Vegetables can be protected from pollution, wildlife and other potential contaminants, which creates conditions for the safest produce-growing method possible.
• Eco-friendly Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is used.
• Certified greenhouses can provide reliable supply throughout the year.
The “Certified Greenhouse” program will involve ongoing audits to ensure that certified producers continue to meet the rigorous standards set by the association. Certification will be granted exclusively to greenhouse operations that comply with the following NAGHVG definition of a greenhouse:
• A fully enclosed, permanent aluminum or steel structure clad either in glass or impermeable plastic for the controlled environment growing of certified greenhouse/hothouse vegetables.
• The facility must use computerized irrigation and climate control systems, including heating and ventilation capabilities.
• Produce must be grown in a soilless medium that substitutes for soil.
• It must use hydroponic methods.
• It must practice Integrated Pest Management.
Any greenhouse grower/shipper in North America can join the association. A main focus of the group will be to educate retailers and consumers about greenhouse and hothouse products, and how they are grown.
Several veg growers new launch association
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