Starting Monday, Oct. 25, a multi-discipline team of North American horticultural experts embarks on The Sustainability Initiative, touring firms in The Netherlands involved in state-of-the-art sustainable horticultural science, technology and more. Over five days, the project’s 10 participants–including U.S. and Canadian journalists and experts in sustainable horticultural business, finance, science, technology and policy–will visit 24
Search far and wide, and you’ll be hard pressed to find North American greenhouse operations that do not rely on peat moss for at least some production. Peat moss has proven itself over the years to be an effective growing medium that helps regulate air and moisture around plant roots. It is of less weight
Agricultural representatives withdrew en masse Monday from the Leonardo Academy’s sustainable agriculture standard setting initiative, citing systemic limitations and chronic anti-agriculture biases inherent in the writing committee structure set up for this initiative. The nearly 60-member committee has six greenhouse floriculture representatives. They are: –Ximena Franco-Villegas, Asocoflores–Mark Yelanich, Metrolina Greenhouses–Will Healy, Ball Horticultural Company–Alvin J.
Rocket Farms, the fourth largest greenhouse operation in the country, recently met the requirements to earn VeriFlora certification for agricultural sustainability. VeriFlora certification requires growers to meet standards in environmental sustainability, including sustainable crop production, water conservation, energy efficiency, ecosystem protection and integrated waste management. The certification also addresses social sustainability, ensuring fair labor practices
The number of growers and suppliers pursuing sustainable initiatives continues to grow. What are the results and benefits? Greenhouse Grower will host a Sustainability Summit, Dec. 8-10 in Monterey, Calif. We’ll present the principles of sustainable crop production, the latest on third-party certification and the economics of sustainability. It’s a great opportunity to network and
Biodegradable horticultural containers predate plastic but are capturing fresh interest from growers, retailers and consumers. One company that has seen sustainability come full circle is Western Pulp in Covallis, Ore. Starting with a bushel of old magazines and $250 for homemade experimental equipment, in 1954 Ralph Chapman was the first to bring fiber molded floral
Recently D.S. Cole Growers recently took the next step on its path to achieving sustainability certification according to MPS-Florimark Production, the chain-wide certificate of MPS combining environmental, social and quality aspects. After being the first certified participant for MPS-ABC in the United States D.S. Cole Growers has now opted for certification according to MPS-GAP (Good
The European sustainability standard MPS is a point system based on greenhouse production. D.S. Cole Growers is participating in the environmental part of MPS, which looks mostly at inputs—electricity, fertilizer and crop protection products use. Doug Cole shared some of the inner workings of MPS at a GIE Media roundtable on sustainability at Short Course.
BASF hosted a media summit earlier this month to discuss sustainability as a grounded approach for growers. Greenhouse Grower caught up with Jan Buberl, director of specialty products at BASF, who outlined the chemical company’s sustainability initiatives. BASF deals largely with row-crop farmers yet also serves the greenhouse floriculture market. Have you found greenhouse growers
The multi-stakeholder standards committee working to develop a national standard for sustainable agriculture recently held its third face-to-face meeting over two days at the University-of Arkansas-Fayetteville. At the meeting, committee members discussed and then voted to approve guiding sustainability principles developed by the economic, social and environmental criteria subcommittees. Principles related to farm management and