At Peak of the Market Ltd., we believe that sustainability means having a positive impact on people, the environment, and our community. We aim to do this through the products we provide, our presence in the produce industry and giving back to the community.
The pillars of our approach to sustainability include:
- We are committed to providing Canadians with access to an assortment of safe, high quality, nutritious vegetables that support a healthy diet and food security.
- We are “Rooted in Growers”. This fundamental value recognizes the importance of Growers as food producers. Their economic viability now, and in the future, is a key element of sustainability.
- At Peak of the Market Ltd. “Everyone Matters”. The health and wellness of our employees are a priority, and we are committed to fostering a healthy work culture.
- We continually look for new ways or processes to reduce the amount of waste generated in our business. We do this by:
- Using recyclable and biodegradable packaging materials and staying on top of innovation happening in this area.
- Finding efficiencies in our everyday activities to reduce the use of consumables like paper and plastics; and recycle used items.
- Implementing inventory management and other quality control practices that ultimately reduces food waste and impact at the landfill.
- We work closely with Growers through research and industry involvement to support environmentally sustainable production practices at the farm.
- We are an active part of our community and giving back is important to us.
- We are committed to feeding vulnerable communities in Canada through off-grade food donations.
- We are committed to being active in Community projects and initiatives through staff involvement. Not only does this benefit our community, but it contributes to our healthy work culture.
Common sustainability practices at Peak of the Market Ltd. include:
- Using recyclable, biodegradable and compostable packaging materials.
- Implementing inventory management and other quality control practices that ultimately reduce food waste and impact at the landfill.
- Exploring regenerative agriculture practices to determine how this approach may be integrated with other sustainable practices already implemented on-farm.
- Implementing science-based research strategies for long-term improvements to on-farm best practices to ensure soil health, water conservation, pest management and food safety.
Reducing Food Waste
Peak of the Market Ltd. and our Grower partners work to provide Canadians with safe, high-quality nutritious vegetables that support a healthy diet and food security while reducing food waste and negative impact at the landfill. We do this by providing an off-grade product that might not meet retail standards but is still good quality, nutritious food that should not end up feeding cattle or lining the landfill.
From July 2021-April 30, 2022, Peak of the Market Ltd. donated a total of 2,458,389 lbs of produce to community organizations around our city and throughout. These amounts have been diverted from the landfill and contributed to our sustainability efforts. For the past five years, we have donated approximately $14 million worth of fresh produce to Harvest Manitoba and other community service organizations and food banks.
A partnership with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers also helps tackle hunger and reduce food waste. Every month, volunteers from both the Blue Bombers and Peak of the Market pack boxes of fresh produce and deliver them to local community groups, including lower-income housing groups, Indigenous support groups, newcomer groups, seniors’ groups, school divisions, local food bank organizations and more.
All of our poly potato bags have been redesigned to include less ink and contain fully recyclable materials. Similarly, our potato cartons and master potato and onion bags have been redesigned to include 90% less ink. Our new cartons and master bags are brown, kraft paper and contain only one ink colour – black. These cartons and bags are fully recyclable, biodegradable and compostable. In addition, we have redesigned our onion bags to contain much less labelling and we are working on sourcing a more sustainable mesh.
Potato Sustainability Alliance
Peak of the Market Ltd. is a member of the Potato Sustainability Alliance (PSA). The PSA is a collaboration of all players in the potato value chain and works to define, measure and advance potato sustainability by using robust metrics to drive improvements in productivity and profitability. Current focuses of the PSA include nitrogen use efficiency, irrigation use efficiency, greenhouse gas emissions, pesticide risk, worker safety and waste/recycling. Dr. Tracy Shinners-Carnelley, Vice President of Research, Quality and Sustainability, was recently elected to the PSA Board of Directors as Secretary. Learn more about the PSA.