Sustainability Standard for greenhouses involving energy efficiency now offered nationwide in US
By Treena Hein
Food Alliance, an Oregon-based group which defines and promotes sustainability in agriculture and the food industry, now offers a national ‘Sustainability Standard’ certification for nursery and greenhouse operators.
It was launched at the end of May.
Greenhouse owners can use it to evaluate management practices, measure social and environmental performance, or seek voluntary third-party certification (inspectors contracted by International Certification Services).
The Sustainability Standard addresses:
– operational efficiencies (energy use, recycling, and so on)
– soil and water conservation
– wildlife habitat and biodiversity conservation
– adaptive management of pests, diseases, and weeds
– safe and fair working conditions
The Standard applies to field, container, and greenhouse operations in North America producing one or more of the following products: woody ornamentals, annuals, perennials, foliage plants, potted flowering plants and cut flowers. The standard does not currently apply to Christmas trees, tree farms, etc.
“Started in 1993 as a project of Oregon State University, Washington State University, and the Washington State Department of Agriculture, Food Alliance was formally incorporated in 1997.
Food Alliance enjoys support from leaders in both organic and conventional agriculture, from retail and wholesale food businesses, government agencies, and organizations representing farm labor, animal welfare, and the environment.”
For more, visit here.
To read the positive response of Elizabeth Peters, director of communications for the Oregon Association of Nurseries, and to learn about the first certification (completed at the end of May), visit here.