Our continued commitment to be a force for good in the world is carried out through every aspect of our company. Everyday we are building trust in the quality and authenticity of our products, processes, and our people. Our mission to provide safe, high-quality fresh foods depends on the health of our business; and that includes both financial and social investments.
Leading by example through consumer health and wellbeing is a top priority at Taylor Farms. The responsibility of feeding families across North America is matched with our teams’ unparalleled commitment to producing the safest highest quality product possible from field to fork. Furthermore, we have restructured our sourcing model and developed new growing regions to reduce food miles and increase freshness.
In 2019 we worked closely with the Leafy Green Marketing Agreement (LGMA) to take our own research to industry practice by establishing new irrigation water standards, a preventive step to mitigate risks of pathogens and food safety outbreaks. Pre-harvest testing has been part of our Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) program for over a decade. Innovation has been one of our main focuses within the past 25 years, and we are continuously working to improve our work environment.
We pride ourselves in maintaining an innovative culture, challenging ourselves to improve upon today’s practices in the field and within processing operations, logistics, and consumer experience. Our goal and focus in adopting automation throughout our business is to create a more desirable work environment for our employees and to increase productivity. Utilizing automation to remedy repetitive and labor intensive roles, provides an opportunity to transition our employees towards higher skilled and higher paid positions. Our team is most proud of changes made to the romaine harvest, switching from totes to bin-bulk which not only increases productivity but creates a more desirable and ergonomic work environment for our employees.
Taylor Farms has one of the largest and most diverse raw material sourcing programs in the world with over 125,000 acres harvested annually. One of the new technologies we’re excited about is the new Global Forecasting Tool, which helps to bring powerful information to our fingertips. Taylor Farms is one of the first agriculture companies to prioritize the implementation of automation and robotic initiatives throughout our operations. In 2018, Taylor Farms opened two state-of-the-art training facilities focused on employee learning and development through engagement and hands-on experience with highly technical and sophisticated machinery.
We are looking for solutions across all our segments for Taylor Farms branded items to reduce our plastic footprint. Taylor Farms is researching and trialing various solutions such as biodegradable, compostable, bio-based and recyclable packaging solutions. We have begun lightweighting our trays, using 21% less plastic compared to competitors and eliminating non-essentials packaging components such as party tray lids. We understand that recycling can be confusing, it depends on the packaging material, and sometimes where you live. We have begun implementing the How2Recycle label on our packaging, helping to take the guessing game out of recycling.
Our Taylor Farms team has made great improvements for our business and the industry through these six projects in the past 25 years. Learn more about our commitment to a Healthy Business in the video below and be sure to stay tuned on social as we celebrate the people and the processes that are helping us leave this place a better world, one salad at a time.