In early June, ResponsibleAg achieved an important milestone. The 2000th audit was completed at Growmark FS in Bridgetown, New Jersey. Facilities began signing up for audits in December of 2014 and the first facility to complete the rigorous process and become certified was the Hillsboro, Tenn., location of Crop Production Services, now known as Nutrien Ag Solutions.
The 2,000th audit is an event of note as the initiative closes in on the half-way mark to reaching participation by all facilities. Mike Layton, Safety Manager, Growmark FS, LLC, said having the 2,000th facility to complete the compliance assessment was simply the luck of the draw, but he's pleased nonetheless. "Reaching this milestone is important because it demonstrates the program is moving forward as more facilities become involved. It is a worthwhile program our industry can definitely benefit from." Layton believes the program demonstrates the industry's commitment to being self-policing and helps deter increased levels of regulation.
"Voluntary participation in ResponsibleAg lets us show regulators and the public that we follow the rules because we are committed to doing a good job," Layton says. Read more about Growmark FS and the company's participation in ResponsibleAg in the August issue of CropLife magazine.
Check out the July issue of CropLife magazine for the first 'Faces of ResponsibleAg.' This new series highlights the people and facilities involved with ResponsibleAg. Articles are intended to raise awareness of the organization and encourage participation. Faces of ResponsibleAg will share members' stories and commitment to meeting environmental, health, safety and security requirements and how the assessment, corrective action plan, resources and audit process have helped them. In the first Faces of ResponsibleAg, read about GreenPointAG, an independent retailer that became the first organization to join ResponsibleAg and how the company is using its membership to improve its focus on safety. You'll also find a link to Faces of ResponsibleAg in the News section of ResponsibleAg.org in the future.Back to Top
New life is being breathed into the communications program of ResponsibleAg. This spring, the communications committee retained the services of two long-time ag communicators, Dee Weeda and Linda Leydens. Based in Iowa, they each have a wealth of agriculture communications experience with companies involved in crop genetics, crop nutrition, ag retail and equipment manufacturing. You'll see their work monthly in CropLife magazine, regularly in the ResponsibleAg newsletter which will be sent eight times year, on the 10th of the month. Also watch for a new ResponsibleAg brochure, regular communications on Twitter @ResponsibleAg as well as more frequent news in the ag trade press. You may also hear from them as they gather news articles and do interviews for Faces of ResponsibleAg.Back to Top
ResponsibleAg is welcoming newly certified retail facilities with a great, new welcome kit. Packaged in a uniquely designed, round mailing container, the welcome kit congratulates and recognizes personnel at the facility for their effort in becoming Committed, Compliant, Safe and Certified!
The kit contains tools to get the word out to employees and the community about this important achievement. Facilities will receive a ResponsibleAg certification plaque to display in the facility, colorful window clings, a personalized news release to be distributed to local newspapers and radio stations, a commemorative ball cap, mouse pad, flash drive, a discount for merchandise on the ResponsibleAg online store and much more.Back to Top
According to OSHA, each year, more than 4 million workers suffer from serious job-related injuries or illnesses, and more than 4,000 die from work-related incidents. These incidents hurt workers, their families, communities and businesses.
To raise awareness of the value and importance of workplace safety and health programs, in June 2017, OSHA launched the nationwide "Safe and Sound Campaign." Through this initiative OSHA assists employers by providing a variety of valuable resources, consultations, webinars and training to help companies establish and continuously improve their safety compliance.
ResponsibleAg is committed to safety and is a proud supporter of the Safe and Sound Campaign. Join us in supporting Safe + Sound Week, August 13-19. Check out the OSHA Safe + Sound website.Back to Top
ResponsibleAg will begin notifying the appropriate Senator and Representative for each facility once the facility becomes certified. A personalized note will be mailed to the legislator's local office. Becoming certified is a significant accomplishment and this new service is sure to garner some well-deserved praise and attention for the newly-certified facility. With this new service, ResponsibleAg also can notify a central point of contact, such as a public relations, media or communications person, for each participating facility. If your company has a central contact you want notified when certification occurs, please contact Ewa at the ResponsibleAg Helpdesk by calling 270-683-6777 or by e-mail at email@example.comBack to Top
Lead instructor, Brian Miller, successfully guided another group of industry professionals through the ResponsibleAg Auditor Training Course. The 2018 course was held June 19-22 at the Ford B. West Center for ResponsibleAg in Owensboro, Ky., and was completed by 22 individuals from 15 states reaching from coast to coast. The course is the first step in becoming a ResponsibleAg Accredited Auditor.
Training is held at the Ford B. West Center, a retired farm center specifically retrofitted for training purposes. Covering three acres, the facility is one huge "prop" that mirrors an active, working farm center. It features areas for dry and liquid fertilizer, anhydrous ammonia, package and bulk crop protection chemicals, seed and other activities common to a retail farm center. Throughout the four-day course, every area of the facility is used for training in a thorough program to create more experienced, effective and competent auditors. Group exercises with mock auditing reinforce the learning process and help to familiarize the students with the auditing process.
The course teaches the audit process, not the regulations, and there is a major emphasis on ethics. Throughout the course, attendees complete assignments and tests using an audience response system designed specifically for this course. This system allows the instructor to see how well each student comprehends the information before proceeding to the next section. The system is key in ensuring each member of the class has a thorough understanding of the course material.
Congratulations to the 22 individuals who successfully completed the 2018 ResponsibleAg Auditor Training Course!Back to Top
Nearly 200 facilities have recently received certification from ResponsibleAg and are now Committed, Compliant, and Safe. Congratulations all, and welcome to ResponsibleAg!
ResponsibleAg is an industry-led initiative committed to helping agribusinesses properly store and handle farm input supplies. The program helps members ensure they are compliant with environmental, health, safety and security regulations to keep employees, customers and our communities safe.