“It’s an exciting time for our growers, who are embracing programmes that will contribute to stronger communities, economic stability"
The California Prune Board has revealed several methods of research in order to drive its sustainability initiatives.
As the world’s leading supplier of prunes, California has led the way in agricultural standards for decades. Now the California Prune Board is seeking to highlight its sustainability initiatives, which support the environment and local communities while futureproofing the industry.
California has been a key player in the global prune industry for more than a century. From humble beginnings during the Gold Rush era, its prunes now make up 40 percent of the world’s supply.
The US state is renowned globally for excellence in farming and has been recognised as an early adopter of climate-friendly practices. In the Sacramento and San Joaquin plum orchards, California prune growers use research, innovation, and technology to conserve water and energy and lessen their carbon footprint. California Prune growers also support employees with fair wages and robust safety processes while continuing to strengthen the industry’s roots and reputation for future generations to enjoy and benefit from.
Esther Ritson-Elliott, Director of International Marketing and Communications, California Prune Board, said: “As a leader in sustainability, Californian growers continue to improve on practices by investing in orchard management and research that strengthens the industry and demonstrates its commitment to the planet today, in readiness for tomorrow.”
The California Prune industry works closely with leading universities and the likes of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to utilise best practices while operating under robust federal and state requirements around the use of pesticides and water.
Californian growers continue to improve on practices by investing in orchard management and research that strengthens the industry and demonstrates its commitment
Furthermore, California prune growers are exploring and rolling out ways to utilise solar power, conserve water, and reduce waste while the wider supply chain seeks to curb greenhouse gas emissions and leverage renewable energy to power operations, among other initiatives. The orchards are also high biodiversity systems with a lower carbon footprint than other major perennial orchard crops.
Esther concluded: “It’s an exciting time for our growers, who are embracing programmes that will contribute to stronger communities, economic stability, and a better environment.
“Additionally, prunes also fit into a sustainable diet. They offer a myriad of nutritional benefits for human health, such as fibre, vitamin K, and vitamin B6, and because consumers can eat the whole fruit, they are low in waste. As prunes are dried plums, they’re also lighter in weight so need fewer resources to transport them.”