US- Jac. Vandenberg, a family-owned fresh fruit importer, stands firm on its commitment made in 2022 to achieve sustainable certifications for all SUNRAYS mandarin growers by the end of 2024.

In a significant move, consumers in the United States can anticipate SCS Global Services-certified SUNRAYS® mandarins, marking a pivotal achievement in sustainability for Forbel, the first citrus grower in Uruguay, and Pampa Baja, a Peruvian SUNRAYS grower.

This groundbreaking certification makes them the world’s inaugural Sustainably Grown certified citrus growers, aligning with Jac. Vandenberg’s year-end goal for all SUNRAYS mandarin growers to attain Sustainably Grown® certification.

John Paap, sustainability manager at Jac. Vandenberg, expressed pride in this collaborative effort: “We are proud to work with the teams at Forbel and Pampa Baja who share the same passion for sustainability and the protection of our species.”

“Their commitment to sustainability is now verified by their achievement of becoming the first citrus growers to earn Sustainably Grown certification.”

SCS Global Services, recognized for its stringent standards in sustainable agriculture, hailed Forbel’s accomplishment as a milestone within the Uruguayan fresh produce industry.

Kevin Warner, SCS Global Services Director of ESG Certifications for the food and agriculture sector, commended Forbel’s adherence to the rigorous criteria, setting a significant precedent in the sector.

Forbel, committed to sustainability, embraces regenerative farming practices ensuring robust agroecosystems in harmony with nature.

Malena Miglionico, operations manager at Forbel, emphasized the arduous yet rewarding journey: “Achieving this certification has been a challenging and demanding process for the entire team, but the satisfaction is immense.”

“This accomplishment reinforces the company’s commitment to implement sustainability practices: economically viable, socially beneficial, and environmentally respectful.”

The debut of the first Sustainably Grown certified SUNRAYS mandarins in U.S. supermarkets this summer is a testament to these certified farms’ dedication. These mandarins, carrying the Sustainably Grown certification mark, assure consumers of third-party verification.

John Paap emphasized the evolving global landscape and the company’s commitment to sustainability in the face of these challenges: “At Vandenberg, nature has a prominent seat at the decision table.

He further emphasized on the need to take the current state of the planet and species extremely seriously.

“And that shows in everything we’ve been doing over the last decade, from our innovations in packaging to sustainable farming initiatives and participation in shaping industry practices and standards around sustainability.”

As Jac. Vandenberg continues to pioneer sustainable practices, the arrival of Sustainably Grown certified SUNRAYS mandarins in the U.S. market marks a significant stride towards a more sustainable future for the fresh produce industry.

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