Giorgio Fresh Company and Giorgi Mushroom Company are dedicated to being on the forefront of practicing "green" protocols. Here are just a few of the ways we are supporting environmental sustainability:
- We have implemented a corporate sustainability program to oversee activities in all Giorgio companies. Its mandate is to review, document, and promote environmental programs for each Giorgio division.
- We operate our own state-of-the-art 330,000 gallon per day waste water treatment facility. This allows us to discharge our treated water directly into a local stream while remaining in compliance with all relevant environmental regulations. We have remained in compliance continually since going on-line in 1987.
- We have added water storage tanks to collect rain and runoff water for reuse in making mushroom compost. An estimated 32 million gallons per year is captured for reuse.
- We have added a separate sealed collection tank to allow us to recycle high BOD (Biological Oxygen Demand) water back on to the compost. This returns the nutrients to where they belong, on the compost, and not into the environment.
- Gray water from our plants goes through constructed wetlands that clean the water which is then used to irrigate land on which we grow hay that is recycled for mushroom compost.
- We have replaced our incandescent lights with higher efficiency fluorescent light bulbs to lower energy consumption for lighting by 77%.
- We have added portable BTU recovery systems (heat exchangers) in the mushroom growing rooms. Each of these units saves the equivalent of the air conditioning requirements of five homes per day.
- We are upgrading to higher efficiency electric motors to better manage heavy energy usage.
WASTE REDUCTION AND RECYCLING:
- We recycle over 200,000 tons a year of farm by-products such as corn cobs, straw bedding and cocoa shells.
- We collect over 4,000 tons of leaves from local municipalities each year. For our leaf collection program, we received a “Wastewatchers Award” from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
- More than 500,000 cubic yards per year of Giorgio’s compost are used at the end of mushroom crops in strip mine reclamation, gardening, field crops, vegetable growing and manufactured soils.
- Giorgio recycles over 500,000 pounds of corrugated per year.
- We recycle 80 tons per year of plastic peat moss bags that were once put into landfills.
- We recycle our film paper cores that also used to be land filled.
PESTICIDE / FUNGICIDE REDUCTION PROGRAM:
- We were the first mushroom company in the United States to adopt Integrated Pest Management (IPM). This program has reduced our pesticide use by 90%. The Pennsylvania State University and the University of Delaware certified our IPM program in 1997.
- We are a leading grower of organic mushrooms.
- We are reviewing all chemicals with VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and researching alternative products.
- We purchase recycled products including paper supplies and toner cartridges.
Our fleets have implemented the following actions:
- Driver fuel savings bonus program: We reward drivers for reducing average fuel consumption per mile.
- Optimized idles on tractors: Reduces fuel consumption.
- Governors on tractors with a maximum speed of 63 miles per hour: Reduces fuel consumption.