Sovena, USA, one of the largest olive oil companies in the world and based on the Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome, has recently announced a series of sustainability initiatives that the company has undertaken to help make a positive impact on the planet within their operations and production.
While this year marks the company’s official initiative kick-off, many of its efforts are already under way and in full swing – starting at the company’s roots themselves. At the foundation of what Sovena does are olive trees. In order to create a carbon neutral footprint, it has planted over 10 million trees so far, with more being planted every day. The company plans to sustain consistent tree-planting efforts each year.
Another main focus of Sovena, USA’s sustainability efforts is recycling and waste reduction. It has set into motion the necessary steps to cease use of black pigment in plastic bottle caps and pourers. Black pigments are known for making products harder to recycle.
The company also plans to stop using plastic-wrapped bottles to reduce their amount of plastic waste.
“Black pigment plastic presents a huge obstacle to recycling because scanners and sorting machines at recycling plants cannot detect it,” managing director Enrique Escudero said. “When it can’t be recycled, it then winds up tossed in landfills, leaving a clear path for its toxic chemicals to permeate the environment. It was therefore a no-brainer for us to start to remove this element from our production.”
Sovena’s waste reduction efforts extend throughout their entire production process, company officials added.
Its eventual goal is no-waste production. Water is reused for irrigation and watering trees, olive tree leaves are used for animal feed, and olive pits are used to heat their mill.
“All of these initiatives stem from our mantra, ‘from our mill to your fork,’” Escudero said. “Meaning, we have complete control over the quality of our products and how all aspects are used, reused, recycled and eliminated.” Escudero believes these efforts are more than worth the time and thoughtfulness required.
“When our projects are sustainable, it ensures a sustainable future,” Escudero said. “It is everyone’s responsibility – be it a company or a single person – to contribute to sustaining our planet’s future.”
Sovena’s sustainability initiative is driven by what company officials call “feeding futures.” They believe in acting in an environmentally responsible fashion, thus reducing the impact of their company’s activities through the efficient management of energy, waste and by-products. The goal is to use its own growth to continually give back to and fuel the planet. “Sovena believes, after 100 years of growth, it is time to fuel the next 100,” the announcement added.