Working with the largest food service company in the world and one of the largest vegetable processors in the United States, Integrated Pest Management practices will be documented by farmers and communicated to customers.
Vegetable farms in New York use a large quantity of pesticides in order to control pests to a level that results in crops that are acceptable to the demands of the marketplace. In order to more profitably manage their farms, minimize risk to the environment, and control pests that attack their crops, vegetable farmers in New York need to learn more about and adopt more Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices. At the same time, these farmers want to communicate to their customers both retail and wholesale about the adoption of environmentally sound farming practices. Consumers need to understand the impact that their buying decisions have on the pest and crop management practices that farmers choose. Preferentially buying products that farmers have produced using IPM techniques will encourage further IPM adoption and lower the environmental impact of farming.
The identification of agricultural products as Integrated Pest Management (IPM) grown has recently taken a giant step forward. Work on pest identification began at Cornell in 1987.
A set of standards modeled after the Cornell/ Wegmans IPM labeling program is required of SYSCO's many suppliers. SYSCO is a $30 billion-a-year food service company and is the largest in the world. This development is leading to Birdseye (and about 70 other suppliers) to identify the IPM training needed for about 250 vegetable farmers in New York and will extend to all of their growers nationally and internationally. We have recently completed the design of an IPM survey for all of Birdseye's New York growers (ProFac cooperative). Birdseye field staff administered the survey and we will evaluate the results which will help define the training needs for these growers.
The IPM Institute of North America, founded by Petzoldt and Green in 1998, will play a major role as either the third party auditor in the process or as the coordinator of auditors.
SYSCO's initiative will have a huge impact on New York vegetable farmers in the practice of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The result will include savings through IPM practices and allowing them access to or perhaps expansion in the marketplace. IPM demonstrations over the years have shown that pesticides are reduced between 10 percent and 80 percent when IPM is adopted. In addition, the impact of vegetable farming on the New York State environment will be lessened considerably resulting in a benefit for all New Yorkers.
- Other USDA (e.g., Water Quality, Special Grants, NRI)
- Federal Formula Funds - Extension (e.g., Smith Lever, RREA)
- Private (e.g., commodity groups, foundations, companies)
- State or Municipal (e.g., NYSDAM)
- USDA CSREES
- IPM Institute of North America
- Birdseye Foods
- SYSCO Corporation
- Curtis Petzoldt, IPM Program, Cornell University, NYSAES
- Thomas A. Green, Ph.D., C.C.A., President, IPM Institute of North America, Inc.
- Abby Seaman, IPM Program, Cornell University, NYSAES