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Nikki Rodoni Talks Latest Monterey County Sustainability Working Group Meeting on 3rd Party Social Accountability

Nikki Rodoni Talks Latest Monterey County Sustainability Working Group Meeting on 3rd Party Social Accountability

SALINAS, CA - Ever wanted to hear from the experts themselves about 3rd Party Social Accountability Certification? At this week’s Monterey County Sustainability Working Group (MCSWG) meeting, attendees will have the chance to hear from experts from Whole Foods, Andrew & Williamson, and Equitable Food Initiative, to decide for themselves about this increasingly popular trend. The meeting will take place on Thursday, September 22, at CSU Monterey Bay’s Salinas City Center from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM.

CSUMB Salinas City Center (Steinbeck Center), Salinas, CA

With sustainability efforts in the produce industry gaining momentum, this meeting will help provide perspective from the point of view of the certification providers, the buyers who are looking to ensure their product is safe and responsibly-grown, and producers who have gone through the challenges and successes of the Social Accountability certification process. 

Nikki Rodoni, Founder, Monterey County Sustainability Working Group“With responsible labor practices and transparency being at the forefront of the produce industry, it is important for all sides of the issue to begin a conversation and take a proactive approach,” shared Nikki Rodoni, Founder and CEO of Measure to Improve, as well as Founder of MCSWG. “The purpose of the meeting is to invite multiple perspectives from those that have experience, as well as address questions from both producers and from those providing the certification program. As an industry we want consumers to be confident they are buying produce that is safe and responsibly grown both socially and environmentally.”

Monterey County Sustainability Working Group, June 2016 Meeting

The agenda for this week’s meeting is as follows:

Guest Speakers: 

  • Kevin Boyle, Director of Business and Work Force Development for EFI
  • Ernie Farley, Partner and Owner at Andrew & Williamson
  • Amalia Zimmerman-Lommel, Director of Social Responsibility and HR at Andrew & Williamson
  • Robin Foster, Team Leader for Responsibly Grown Global Perishable Purchasing Produce at Whole Foods Markets


11:30 AM -11:50 AM: Welcome and Introductions

Sign In, Networking Opportunity, Roundtable Introductions

11:50 AM - 1:30 PM: Overview: EFI

  • Equitable Food Initiative – (Historical Perspective) Going beyond social accountability – engaging the workforce in social, food safety, and pest management standards
    • What is the process to become certified
    • How long does it take?
    • What does it cost?
    • Who is participating?

  • Customer Perspective: Andrew and Williamson
    • Challenges
    • Successes/Benefits

  • Buyer Perspective: Whole Foods
    • Why are suppliers asked to participate?
    • Does it guarantee a higher price?

  • Q & A

Thursday’s meeting will be held at CSUMB’s Salinas City Center in the Steinbeck Center at 1 Main Street, Salinas, CA, 93906.      

“I’d like to express my sincere appreciation to CSUMB for generously donating the space at Salinas City Center,” Nikki made sure to add.

If you have questions ahead of time for the Q & A, and would like to submit them to be read, please email to Nikki Rodoni at [email protected].

Companies in this Story

Measure To Improve

The mission of Measure to Improve is to help agricultural producers and processors measure, improve and credibly promote...

Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce

Food is our passion! Yes, we grow some fantastic fruits and vegetables, but it's about more than that. It's about...