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Sustainably Grown

Sustainably Grown
Setting the Standard for Sustainable Agriculture

Gain market visibility and take a proactive approach to addressing sustainability in a straightforward, cost-effective way. Sustainably Grown certification provides agricultural producers from all over the world with a detailed roadmap to satisfy the emerging market for sustainable products. Certified producers are leaders in worker protection, environmental responsibility and product quality.

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Program Details

The certification program currently requires conformance with the Sustainably Grown Standard V1.3, which provides a comprehensive framework and common set of requirements grouped into three categories – Environmental Sustainability, Social & Economic Sustainability, and Product Integrity. Agricultural crops of all types and production systems of all sizes are eligible. Our global network of auditors can complete assessments anywhere in the world.

The next version of the Standard, Sustainably Grown V2.0, was released on July 12, 2016. Producers are expected to fully comply with V2.0 in 2017. This updated version incorporates the latest best practices in responsible agricultural production and is aligned with other industry-level initiatives, including:

  • American National Standard for Sustainable Agriculture (ANSI/Leo-4000)
  • Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP) Social Reference Code

V2.0 was developed in accordance with SCS’ Standards Development Procedure, which emphasizes stakeholder input and transparency. During a 60-day consultation period, SCS received feedback from diverse stakeholders in the supply chain, including producers, manufacturers, retailers, foodservice companies, NGOs and other groups interested in sustainable agriculture.

To access V1.3 and V2.0 of the Standard, and to learn more about the updates in V2.0, visit the Program Documents tab.

Certification Process
  1. Apply for certification
    Fill out the SCS application form and sign the SCS Assessment Services Agreement.

  2. Approve the work order
    SCS generates a work order describing the audit scope and costs. Your signature on the work order indicates your approval and sets the audit process in motion.

  3. Complete a self-assessment
    You complete a Self-Assessment Checklist to help identify gaps in conformance and prepare you for the audit.

  4. Evaluation Audit
    The SCS auditor conducts an on-site audit, which includes an opening meeting, physical inspection of the site, review of documents and records, interviews with personnel, and a closing meeting

  5. Audit Report Completed
    SCS reviews and finalizes the audit report and delivers the report to you within approximately 20 business days of the closing meeting.

  6. Corrective Action Plan
    If any nonconformities are noted, you prepare a Corrective Action Plan (CAP) describing corrective and preventive actions and providing evidence of implementation.

  7. Certification Decision
    All nonconformities must be closed before certification can be approved. If certification is achieved, you are issued a formal certificate, along with the SCS Kingfisher certification mark and logo use guidelines.

  8. Maintaining Certification
    Annual audits are required to maintain certification

  • Verify your sustainability claims and strengthen your brand in the marketplace.
  • Access top retailer, foodservice, and food & beverage companies that recognize Sustainably Grown as part of their sustainable sourcing policies.
  • Communicate your commitment to sustainability directly on your product with the SCS Kingfisher certification mark, representing one of the world’s most robust sustainability standards.
  • Receive credit for your efforts to protect the environment through resource conservation, ecosystem protection, increased energy and water efficiency, waste management, and more.
  • Ensure a safe, healthy work environment for your labor force and the surrounding community.
  • Gain additional insights into ways to continue improving the sustainability of your operation over time.
  • Profit from operational improvements including increased energy efficiency, reduced waste and improved worker safety and satisfaction.
  1. What is Sustainably Grown’s approach to sustainability?

    Sustainably Grown certification addresses the three pillars of sustainability: environmental stewardship, social responsibility, and economic viability. Through its tiered conformance structure in V2.0, SCS encourages agricultural producers to strive for the highest levels of sustainability performance and promote continuous improvement over time.

  2. Why was the Sustainably Grown certification program developed?

    The program was developed to meet the market needs for sustainability and transparency in the supply chain. In 2004, SCS published the Sustainably Grown leadership standard for the horticulture and floriculture industries. Since then, the program expanded into food crops under the company-wide Kingfisher label.

  3. What does the Sustainably Grown audit encompass?

    The scope of the audit includes all processes and inputs under the Producer’s management or ownership related to the production, harvesting, and handling of the crop(s) to be evaluated.

  4. What types of companies are certified?

    Sustainably Grown is suitable for all farm sizes and agricultural crops, all over the world.

  5. How long does it take to get certified?

    The length of time from start to finish varies, depending on your level of readiness. Recertification is conducted every 3 years, with on-site surveillance audits conducted annually.

  6. How does the Standard address GMOs?

    Sustainably Grown prohibits the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

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Lesley Sykes
Manager, Sustainable Agriculture

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