Greater awareness of health issues, as well as an interest in food production and promotion, has increased political and public concern over farming practices.
Here are 5 reasons why it is recommended you should make a conscious effort to operate more sustainably on your farm:
1. Money savings
Farms and businesses that improve resource efficiency will save hundreds to thousands of pounds each year just by making simple changes through building on the initial quick wins gained through resource management. The accredited iiE Environmental Management System (EMS) will enable farms to scale up savings by setting a framework in place for continuous improvement, including taking on bigger initiatives through cost-benefit analysis and impact assessment.
However, often it is difficult for organisations to recognise that sustainable production methods can often be far less expensive. This is mostly due to the fact that they have to change the way they approach their costing structure entirely, by sometimes making more costly investments in the short term, but this will lead to gains in the long term. What most struggle with is the view of taking a holistic approach towards increasing the efficiency of the system as a whole, rather than just focussing on individual parts of the process.
2. Trusted mark of environmentalism
Supply chains prefer accredited farms because they know that the farm has had to meet certain standards in order to qualify, which gives a farm a competitive edge in addition to other savings being made.
Moreover, by being certified for operating environmentally, this demonstrates to customers, suppliers and investors that the business has made a conscious effort to act responsibly. This will give your business a heightened ability to enter into new markets and could also indicate that your business is more likely to offer a high-quality service and product.
3. Increasing customer numbers
Through acting more responsibly, this will increase marketability for your farm because you are more likely to stand out as a reliable and ethical food supplier. This helps to not only increase customer retention but also to increase customer acquisition.
4.Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and the ‘feel–good factor’
There’s something different about a business that actually cares for the wider environment and community, and that difference can be an effective selling point. Many opportunities arise from engaging in environmentally-friendly business practice, especially the positive PR that can be gained from demonstrating corporate social responsibility actions. The benefits of this are twofold, firstly it will undoubtedly raise awareness of your brand and secondly, it will create a reason to keep people engaged and interested in your business.
5. Staff engagement
Creating an environment where staff can take part in engagement activities will empower members of your team, which helps to drive productivity as staff contribute more of their time and ideas. Forward-thinking organisations are constantly finding ways of engaging employees, which in turn creates a workforce that is committed to their job and works above and beyond what is required.
Increased motivation amongst an engaged workforce improves the quality of output that is offered because the staff feel part of the ethos and vision of the farm and strive to deliver this, therefore playing a crucial part in your brand’s success.