[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

ISO 1400



Since many enviromentalists are also interested in health food here is
an article for both interests:

                  By A. SANCHEZ/ G. CHAVES 
                  La Nación

                  SAN JOSE - The banana plantations of U.S.
                  Standard Fruit Company de Costa Rica are the
                  first worldwide to get the ISO 14001
                  certification, which is granted to companies
                  with effective systems for minimizing the
                  impact of their production on the environment.

                  As company sources explained, this means the
                  implementation of a strict and thorough system
                  of environmental handling which assures the
                  health of the workers and does not harm the
                  environment. 

                  Standard's general manager, Peter Gilmore, pointed out
that the certification
                  obtained by his company is the first for an
agricultural firm that grows food in
                  a tropical country and the first in the world granted
to a banana company. 

                  The process was certified by the Swiss SGS
International Certification
                  Services, the leading independent certification body
in the world. 

                  Juan Carlos Rojas, the legal coordinator of Standard
Fruit in Costa Rica,
                  asserted that the steps taken are in accordance with
the growing interest of
                  consumers, particularly Europeans, to purchase goods
whose production is
                  environment-friendly. 

                  SGS confirmed in the field that Standard's operations
agreed with the terms of
                  the International Standard Organization (ISO), with
headquarters in Geneva,
                  Switzerland. 

                  Strict controls

                  When presenting the certification in San José
yesterday, SGS's Gregg Hansa
                  and Kurt Teuscher acknowledged that Standard keeps
strict controls on labor
                  health and safety, on the handling of solid and liquid
wastes, and on the
                  handling of products for the protection of crops. 

                  They also mentioned that workers are trained for the
application of
                  environmental standards, that the company develops
reforestation programs
                  and that, in general, it protects the environment. 

                  Standard's bananas, which are exported under the Dole
trademark, come from
                  8,200 hectares (more than 20,000 acres) of farms that
belong to the company
                  itself, and from a similar area of independent
growers. 

                  Even though he did not detail the amount invested to
implement the system,
                  Henry Betancur, the director of the project, asserted
that the cost will be
                  recouped through less waste, the elimination of
chemical poisoning or allergies
                  in workers, the reuse and recycling of process
products. He also mentioned
                  savings in electricity and water. 

                  Growing trend

                  The general manager of the National Banana Corporation
(CORBANA in
                  Spanish), Jorge Sauma, asserted that the ISO 14001
certification is another
                  step in the effort to make Costa Rican bananas a
product obtained with top
                  respect for the environment and labor. 

                  Generally speaking, Sauma added, a growing number of
banana companies
                  are striving to obtain a certification of
environment-friendly operations for
                  their farms. 

                  He admitted that the consumers still do not
acknowledge the extra costs of
                  producing bananas without damaging the environment,
but asserted that doing
                  so is a must to satisfy demanding markets, such as
Europe 
Rudy Moehrbach
Waste Reduction Resource Center
Raleigh, NC, 29569
Web Site http:/www.p2pays.org/wrrc
FAX 919-715-1612
Tel 919-715-6533 or 1-800-476-8686