Consumers and commercial food buyers have more and more questions about where food comes from and how it is produced. Best-selling books, high-profile documentary films, and recent food contamination scares and product recalls in the media have raised consumer concern for food issues to an all-time high.
The safety, security, and sustainability of our food system has become a mainstream concern. Expectations for traceability, transparency and accountability in agriculture and the food industry are increasing.
Increasingly, consumers also want high quality foods that fit their values. They want food that connects them with people and the land, with an authentic story about health, artisan craftsmanship, and social and environmental responsibility.
All this attention spells opportunity for farm and food businesses who recognize the trends and are ready to respond.
Many farm and food business have already taken important steps to improve their stewardship of natural resources, to provide safe and fair working conditions, and to ensure humane treatment of animals – but may not be telling their story effectively.
Food Alliance can help if you:
• Manage your operation in ways that ensure long-term sustainability, and are considering opportunities to market the social or environmental attributes of your products.
• Have customers asking questions about your social and/or environmental performance that need an answer or additional assurance.
• Currently make social or environmental claims about products and want to prove those claims with independent third-party verification.
Food Alliance certification is:
• Flexible and comprehensive, covering concerns for the environment, labor, and animal welfare under a single certification.
• Meaningful, with science-based standards and a credible audit process that meets the expectations of consumers and commercial food buyers.
• Practical, with application and inspection processes designed to limit cost and administrative burden.
• Well established, with two decades of experience helping farmers, ranchers and food companies differentiate and add value to their products.
• Widely recognized by companies, groups and agencies as diverse as USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Sysco Corporation, Bon Appétit Management Company, Health Care Without Harm, and the Association of Family Farms, and others.
• Growing rapidly, with certification for a wide range of products and expanding presence in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
If it’s time to tell your sustainability story, Food Alliance can help.
How will my business benefit from Food Alliance certification?
Certification by a reputable non-profit organization like Food Alliance, with clear standards and criteria, is a simple, effective way of demonstrating your commitment to social and environmental responsibility.
Food Alliance certification provides increased credibility and strengthens your brand with independent, 3rd-party verification of claims you make about your products, operations, and environmental, labor and animal husbandry practices.
Food Alliance certification clients commonly cite the following benefits:
• Product Differentiation: Food Alliance certification helps differentiate and add value to products in a crowded marketplace.
• Improved Public Relations: Food Alliance certification helps businesses communicate their commitments to social and environmental responsibility, and enjoy positive publicity.
• Access to New Markets: Food Alliance certification has helped many producers meet and develop relationships with the growing number of commercial buyers seeking more environmentally and socially responsible food products.
• Market Share: Food Alliance certification can help businesses retain or expand market share. Participants report positive customer feedback and increased customer loyalty.
• Stability and More Control Over Pricing: No certification can guarantee a market or on-going price premiums, but with demand for sustainable products growing, there are several examples of Food Alliance certified businesses securing long-term supply relationships and being able to set prices based on cost of production plus a mutually agreed rate of return – often above commodity prices.