Smithfield Foods Hogs Environmental Management Spotlight

Smithfield Foods Hogs Environmental Management Spotlight

WASHINGTON - Smithfield Foods has become the first in its industry to achieve ISO 14001 certification for all its U.S. hog production and processing facilities.

ISO 14001 is the international gold standard for environmental management. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO), based in Geneva, Switzerland, promotes the development and implementation of voluntary international standards for environmental management systems. If a facility receives ISO certification, it means that facility has implemented state-of-the-art environmental management systems that include formalized practices to protect the environment.

To obtain ISO certification, a company must meet a rigorous and comprehensive set of requirements and criteria developed by more than 2,000 experts worldwide. The certification process is conducted by an accredited third-party auditor and ensures that anyone receiving certification has mechanisms in place to ensure, and move beyond, environmental compliance.

In 2001 Smithfield began voluntarily implementing a comprehensive Environmental Management System on all of its Murphy-Brown hog farms. Subsequently Murphy-Brown, Smithfield's livestock production subsidiary, was the world's first livestock production company to receive ISO certification of its EMS.

Smithfield has now received ISO environmental certification of its EMS at all of its U.S. hog production and processing facilities, except new acquisitions. An EMS is a management tool that provides an organized approach to identifying and managing those parts of its operations that could affect the environment, including manure handling, waste treatment systems, water conservation, sanitation and good housekeeping practices.

"It's gratifying to see that companies such as Smithfield Foods are using comprehensive environmental management systems to ensure that high environmental standards are routinely maintained," said Jon Scholl, counselor to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) administrator for agricultural policy.

With sales of $10 billion, Smithfield Foods is the leading processor and marketer of fresh pork and processed meats in the United States, as well as the largest producer of hogs.