Episode 36: Responsible Sourcing 101 with Jessie Gunn

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The Produce Moms Podcast

Episode 36: Responsible Sourcing 101 with Jessie Gunn

“One of the most beautiful parts of responsible sourcing is the effort put into raising communities and empowering the farm workers that feed our families.” 

When mentioning responsible sourcing in the produce industry, most people may immediately think of the standards implemented to yield healthy and safe produce.  However, responsible sourcing is about more than just the produce itself.  It’s important to recognize that the people, the planet and the resources are all symbiotic.  The same parents who are providing healthy, sustainable food sources for their children also want to make sure that they have a beautiful green parks for kids to play in near the cities.  It’s crucial to treat farm workers fairly, and also to make sure that the crops they are harvesting and handling each day aren’t poisoned with countless chemicals.  It takes health awareness in each area to establish sustainable and responsible sourcing.

“If we want to provide good, healthy work environments for workers, we have to be environmentally sound as well.” 

While the words “Fair Trade” are often thrown around, not everyone is aware of what this standard entails. In order for a company to be fair trade certified, they have to be willing to submit to third-party audits, both scheduled and unscheduled.  These audits include interviewing farm workers and reviewing documentation and growing practices.  As you ccan see, the standard encompasses much more than just the produce.

With the rise of awareness through social media and technology, consumers are demanding responsible sourcing.  In fact, the last two years have shown a 19% increase in purchases of items including “free from” labels, Certified Fair Trade, B Corp produce and products that support empowering women.  This is the most dramatic increase in purchasing power that we have seen in decades.

Listen in to this week’s episode to learn more about responsibly sourced produce, internationally sourced produce, the rise in consumer awareness and how you can make a difference in the produce industry.

“Food feeds your whole person. It feeds your values, it feeds your moral alignment. It is about feeding your family what’s best for them to grow them into better human beings.” 

To learn more about responsible sourcing practices, find Jessie Gunn on LinkedIn and visit fairtradeusa.org.  Be intentional about your produce purchases.  If you buy fruit or vegetables that make claims about their sourcing, go to their website and do your research. Be more informed, be more responsible and help us increase responsible sourcing for a more sustainable produce industry.


Some Topics we talk about in this episode:

  • Introduction // Jessie Gunn – 1:18
  • What is Responsible Sourcing? – 3:12
  • Understanding Fair Trade – 7:13
  • Fresh Produce is an International Collaboration – 12:13
  • Environmental Standards – 15:25
  • 2017 Data Points and Consumers’ Interest – 19:43
  • The Main Takeaway – 25:12
  • Wrap-up – 28:49

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Responsible Sourcing

[bctt tweet=”Episode 36 of #TheProduceMoms #Podcast features Produce Industry Expert, Jessie Gunn. Lori and Jessie dive in on the importance of responsible sourcing and how it impacts sustainability!” username=”theproducemom”]

Other Episodes You May Like

Episode 35: Carrying On a Garlic Legacy

Episode 34: Getting Produce Into the Classroom

Episode 33: Looking Back at Episode 1 | Meet Lori Taylor

Episode 32: Sustainability for a Healthier Planet

Episode 31: Raising the Standard of Safe Farming

About Lori

Lori Taylor is the Founder & CEO of The Produce Moms. For ten years she sold fresh produce to over 300 grocery stores throughout the United States, and today she is fully focused on working with the produce supply chain, media, and government to increase fresh produce access & consumption in the US and around the globe. Connect with Lori on LinkedIn.

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