News

Growing momentum for the FSA in Florida’s orange industry

25th June 2021

SAI Platform’s Americas Working Group announces an ambitious project to demonstrate sustainable farming practices in over 90% of Florida’s orange industry using the Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA). As a collaborative initiative between SAI Platform members and local grower groups the project takes aim at improving sustainable on-farm practices including land use and broader social and environmental best practices. 

“This project involves 14 member companies across every level of the industry from farmer cooperative to retail brand,”says Nick Betts, Americas Director, SAI Platform. “We are building consensus across the entire processing orange industry in the state, working collectively to engage and support growers in implementing and communicating sustainability achievements using the FSA.”

The importance of building upon work already underway by several company members will amplify the understanding of what the growers are currently doing in terms of sustainable farming practices in Florida. These farmers make up the vast majority of 56 million boxes of oranges for juice, flavours, fragrances and colours.

“We are supporting this project because we see the value of sustainability and we acknowledge that farmers in Florida are already doing a lot for sustainability,” says Larissa Popp Abrahão, Head of Sustainability & CSR, Cutrale. 

“This project will help the Florida growers to further implement sustainability in their operations”

By September, existing sustainability efforts that farmers are doing will be assessed against the FSA 3.0, including state and federal legislation. 

“This will lead to the development of effective and meaningful tools and resources to support growers in implementing the FSA during the coming growing season.” says Mike Sparks, Executive Vice President/CEO, Florida Citrus Mutual.

The initiative is gaining momentum for the whole industry in the region. 

“Such strong support across the entire supply chain really demonstrates how the Florida orange industry is ready to engage and support growers in advancing their sustainability.” commented Joe Maguire, Procurement Director – Sustainable Agriculture, Coca Cola.

“This project is a clear signal of the Florida citrus grower’s commitment to sustainability and continuous improvement through pre-competitive collaboration.” explains Sean McCoy, Sr. Manager, PepsiCo. 

“By scaling a tool like FSA in Florida to the majority of growers, PepsiCo and Tropicana aim to accelerate broad access to sustainable oranges in the Sunshine State as a key enabler to building long-term resilience for Florida citrus growers.” 

The project brings together multiple leaders in sustainability including: Cutrale, Treatt, PepsiCo, The Coca Cola Company, Ocean Spray, Florida’s Natural, Symrise and ADM and is supported by Florida Citrus Mutual, Peace River Cooperative, Firmenich, and Miritz.

For more information on this project or the Americas Working Group, contact: Nick Betts, nbetss@saiplatform.org