New Version of Sustainably Grown Standard for Agricultural Crops Published

EMERYVILLE, Calif., December 21, 2022 – SCS Standards today announced the publication of the latest version of its popular sustainability standard, the Certification Standard for Sustainably Grown Agricultural Crops (SCS-001 Version 3.0).  Third-party certification under this internationally recognized standard ensures that producers are working diligently to provide a safe and healthy work environment, support farm workers and communities, and protect vital environmental resources such as clean air, clean water, and wildlife habitat while reducing energy consumption, carbon emissions, and waste.

The Standard is unique in the marketplace, providing a unified framework for assessing crops of all types in countries around the world, rather than being relegated to a specific type of crop or region. In the latest version, the Standard, which has been used to certify a wide range of crops – from tree fruits, melons, and berries to salad greens, nuts, herbs, and olives – has been both streamlined and updated in several important ways.

Under Version 3.0, in addition to earning the right to make the Sustainably Grown claim, producers whose crops are certified will be qualified to make complementary claims, either immediately or over a defined phase-in period, including:

  • Farmworker Protection
  • Water Conservation
  • Soil Conservation
  • Biodiversity Protection
  • Pollinator Friendly
  • Climate Neutral

Another important advance is the recognition of “Trailblazers” in key performance categories.  In short, Producers can take their commitment to sustainability even further, opting to meet additional requirements that allow them to achieve recognition under one or more of the following cutting-edge Trailblazer categories:

  • Living Wage
  • Regenerative Agriculture
  • Farmworker Empowerment
  • Community Development
  • Biodiversity Champion

“We’re very excited about these important new developments,” said Victoria Norman, Executive Director of SCS Standards. “These innovations help set the Sustainably Grown Standard apart, giving producers valuable recognition for their sustainability accomplishments.”

Producers certified to this Standard have successfully placed their products in high demand markets such as Europe and North America where interest in increased agricultural accountability and stewardship continues to grow.

Producers seeking to get certified or to renew their certifications under SCS-001 can begin using Version 3.0 in January 2023.  Starting April 1, 2023, all audits will be conducted against Version 3.0. Existing certificate holders will transition to the new version of the standard at their next audit, at the latest starting July 1, 2023.

To download a copy of the Standard, please visit www.scsstandards.org/standards/certification-standard-sustainably-grown-agricultural-crops.

To request more information about certification, please visit www.scsglobalservices.com/services/sustainably-grown-certification.

About SCS Standards

SCS Standards is a non-profit organization committed to the development of standards that advance the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Standards are developed in alignment with best practices and guidelines provided by internationally recognized bodies to ensure a robust, transparent and collaborative approach. SCS Standards is an affiliate of Scientific Certification Systems, Inc., and is its official standards development body.

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