Offering carbon neutral-certified pineapples from farm to table through carbon insetting
Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc., one of the world’s leading vertically integrated producers, marketers, and distributors of high-quality fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables, has announced today the upcoming launch of the Del Monte Zero™ pineapple, its first certified carbon neutral certified pineapple, which factors in the entire supply chain from farm to table in its North American and select European markets.
Using a limited percentage of the company’s total pineapple volumes, the Del Monte Zero pineapple is a new product line extension from the Del Monte Gold®, HoneyGlow®, and Del Monte “The Original” pineapple varieties, grown in Costa Rica and certified as sustainably grown by third-party certification body SCS Global Services. SCS Global Services is a global leader in third-party environmental and sustainability verification, certification, auditing, testing, and standards development. After a comprehensive assessment of Fresh Del Monte’s Costa Rica pineapple production through shipment and sale to the North American and European markets, SCS Global Services determined that the Del Monte Zero pineapples’ greenhouse gas emissions have been negated by the reabsorption of Fresh Del Monte-owned forests, making those pineapples’ carbon footprint net zero.
The limited-availability, carbon neutral certified Del Monte Zero™ Pineapple, which will be available to North American and select European consumers in early 2023, was accomplished through a long-standing program of carefully curated farms that incorporate conservation and reforestation areas to sequester CO2 in situ. Creating this nature-based solution, also known as insetting, is part of a larger commitment the company has made to combating climate change. In addition, investments in upgrading its transportation fleet and reducing greenhouse gas emissions enabled Fresh Del Monte to achieve this significant milestone. The company’s 8,000+ hectare forest containing approximately five million trees neutralizes emissions—from farm to table—produced by the Del Monte Zero™ pineapple. A trained group of Fresh Del Monte team members tracks and measures the company’s forests biannually to ensure the amount of certified carbon-neutral pineapple boxes equates to the carbon dioxide sequestered through such conservation activities.
“Going beyond the farm to include emissions from inland and oceanic transportation, distribution, and commercialization is a major step in helping the environment,” said Hans Sauter, Chief Sustainability Office, Senior Vice President, R&D and Agricultural Services. “We hope that the Del Monte Zero™ pineapples not only generate awareness among our customers, current and future partners but also provide consumers with a unique opportunity to support climate-conscious produce.”
SCS certification was achieved by all eight of Fresh Del Monte’s Costa Rican pineapple farms that export to either Europe or North America. The Del Monte Zero™ pineapple will be labelled as carbon neutral certified by SCS.
“Fresh Del Monte Zero pineapples set an important new benchmark for the global fresh produce industry,” said Stan Rhodes, President and CEO, SCS Global Services. “They have not only demonstrated adherence to extremely rigorous principles of social responsibility, environmental, and governance performance but have also focused on increasing carbon storage on the lands they own and manage, while simultaneously minimizing their GHG emissions, to achieve carbon neutral certification. In doing so, they are confronting the climate crisis head-on.”
With this launch, Fresh Del Monte hopes to be able to expand its carbon neutral practices to other fruits and partner with more customers to join in on the effort to bring more certified sustainably- grown products to the world and to build a Brighter World Tomorrow™.
 SCS’s carbon footprint assessment factored in raw material production required for farming, packaging, transport, distribution and retail of fresh produce, consumption (including waste and packaging disposal), and end-of-life (of inedible food waste) using 2021 production data. Assumptions were used to address data gaps regarding emissions as well as retail, consumption, and end-of-life cycle changes. Soil carbon change was not considered.