At Long Last
November 1, 2007
At Long Last
Stonyfield Farm achieves “all organic” status.
Call it an early birthday present — to itself. Enjoying the largest organic milk supply ever, Londonderry, N.H.-based Stonyfield Farm last month converted the remainder of its dairy product line to organic. “This is the culmination of 25 years of work and passion, and just in time for our 25th birthday,” says Gary Hirshberg, Stonyfield’s president and “CE-Yo.”
The company says the final step toward total conversion was making Stonyfield’s fat-free 6-ounce line organic. Earlier this year, the company converted its 32-ounce fat-free quarts and smoothies to organic. Stonyfield Farm will now offer an all-organic line of 6- and 32-ounce yogurts, drinkable yogurt smoothies, YoBaby yogurts for babies and toddlers, YoKids squeezers and yogurts, frozen yogurt and ice cream, Oikos Greek-style yogurt, and milk.
“This is a goal that often seemed out of reach due to the scarcity of organic milk and other ingredients, but our strong supplier relationships — primarily with Organic Valley/CROPP — and their steadfast support of this company and our consumers made this monumental achievement possible,” Hirshberg says.
The company says the increase in organic milk supply is due to the growing number of conventional farmers completing their conversion to organic, a regulated process requiring that grazing land and feed are not treated with chemical fertilizers or persistent toxic pesticides for three years. Stonyfield Farm and the Organic Valley cooperative have worked together in recent years to further encourage organic conversion. In addition to establishing a transition fund to provide monetary support for farmers during the conversion process and providing more staff to work directly with farmers, the companies scheduled hundreds of procurement and membership retention events, and sponsored organic workshops and conferences for farmers.
Hirshberg and his wife, Meg, also contributed $100,000 to a loan fund to supply needed support to organic farm families, and Stonyfield Farm was the lead sponsor — with a gift of $450,000 — of the nation’s first land grant-based organic dairy farm, at the University of New Hampshire.
For more information about Stonyfield Farm, its products and initiatives, visit www.stonyfield.com .