This fall, the United States experienced the deadliest outbreak of food-borne illness in the last decade after contaminated cantaloupes spread listeria bacteria to at least 116 people across the country, killing 23. The terrible outcome underscores the need for the companies to take best possible practices around food safety.
One GOOD Company finalist, food marketing cooperative Cherry Central, has done just that, adopting a high-tech system of quality and food safety monitors to ensure that their products—which range from juices and sauces to market-ready produce—meet the highest standards. We visited Luddington, Michigan, home to a food processing plant that works closely with Cherry Central and some of the original farmers behind the cooperative, to learn more about how they ensure their customers get the best produce possible.
Key to Cherry Central's approach is technology developed by N2N Global, which allows the company to electronically trace produce from the orchard through the various steps of transportation, storage, and processing into juice or other products, all the way down to the bottle or can. Not only does that mean that safety standards, like maintaining a safe temperature range, are constantly monitored, but also that any quality issues can be identified and dealt with on a minute-to-minute basis.
Cherry Central's commitment to providing the best product to its customers while keeping independent growers and processors in control make them a GOOD company.