HWA Stakeholder Spotlight: The Environment
Over the course of 2022, Harris Woolf Almonds will be spotlighting our major stakeholder groups: our community, employees, environment, and suppliers. This first article in the series focuses on the environment and our efforts to protect it.
We’re painfully aware of how important it is to cultivate and care for our planet. That’s why we’re a B Corp, and why we have several exciting, impactful, environmentally conscious projects in the works at our Coalinga and Ballico facilities.
New Environmental Sustainability Projects at HWA
- Pollinator Habitats
Many HWA growers have developed pollinator-friendly habitats in their orchards and 36% of our grower base is Bee Friendly Farming Certified. This means participating growers plant food sources for pollinators, make nesting habitat available, and use an integrated pest management strategy among other practices (you can read more about this program here).
To encourage participation among even more of our growers and to make a bigger difference ourselves, Harris Woolf Almonds is developing pollinator-friendly habitats at both our Coalinga and Ballico facilities. By 2025, we’ve committed to having 75% of our growers participating in the Bee Friendly Farming program, making a real difference for pollinators across the length of California.
- Solar Projects
Two impressive solar projects, currently in progress at both HWA sites, will measurably reduce our dependence on non-renewable energy. Solar is a great fit for our locations as panels blend well together with other environmental initiatives. New pollinator habitats will be planted around solar panels, for example.
- Wastewater Filtration System
We're putting worms to work in Ballico, California. Coming soon is an innovative wastewater filtration system that harnesses the power of hundreds and hundreds of earthworms. These tiny, happy laborers will turn wastewater from our processor into high-quality water suitable for irrigation.
This is a multi-functional, high impact solution. In addition to the clean wastewater, this filtration system produces quality fertilizer and sequesters carbon, helping to reduce net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Sustainability Goals and Environmental Impact into the Future
When Harris Woolf Almonds released its Inaugural Impact Report in 2021, we outlined four goals that we committed to achieve by 2025.
- As mentioned above, we want at least 75% of our grower base to be Bee Friendly Farming Certified- more than double the participation from the 2021 crop year.
- 75% of total grower acreage will participate in the California Almond Sustainability Program (CASP)- again, more than double the participation from the 2021 crop year.
- 50% of the energy we use will come from renewable sources, up from only 15% in 2020.
- Our solar projects will help us accomplish this!
- We commit to a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from our facilities.
This year, Harris Woolf Almonds is making concerted strides towards making our 2025 Sustainability Goals a reality. Across all fronts, and all aspects of our business, we’re working to use less, conserve more, and to step up as strong stewards of our environment.
That means a lot to us, and we hope it means a lot to you as well.