Sustainable Food Group

About Us

Sustainability Strategies for You & Your Supply Chain

Market demands for sustainability and transparency are driving food and agriculture companies to act. We’re here to help.

In 2014, IPM Institute launched Sustainable Food Group to focus specifically on developing and implementing programs to advance sustainability in food and agriculture. We help our clients create sustainable, high-impact outcomes for their business, for people and the environment.

Our Vision

We envision a world where food is grown in sync with natural processes and where agriculture and food companies are a force for good, directly benefiting workers, consumers, water, air, climate, biodiversity and soil.

Our Mission

Sustainable Food Group exists to help food and agriculture companies and supply chains create high-impact, sustainable outcomes for their business, people and the environment. We do this through innovative research, tools to measure progress and by developing field-to-retailer programs that are tailored to balance the needs of all stakeholders.


Our Approach

Providing Customized Services to Advance Sustainability

We are experts in supply chain sustainability, helping organizations in the food and agriculture sector develop strategies and implement changes with positive outcomes for people and the environment. We bring sustainability to the field-level and help our clients measure and communicate results.

We leverage our on-farm insights, supply chain expertise, network and experience with agricultural sustainability to develop these projects. Every project is unique to each client, customized to fit their supply chain and goals. Examples of our work include:

  • Developed sustainability goals related to packaging, food waste, climate and pollinators for an apple grower, packer/shipper.
  • Made recommendations for and helped craft a pollinator commitment for Walmart U.S.
  • Developed and executed a global sustainable sourcing program for a spice retailer.

While every project is unique, they all start with a desire to understand our client’s needs, and the goal of creating high-impact, sustainable outcomes.

Generally, our project process flow includes three phases: Analyze, Design and Do.


We aim to understand our clients’ needs and map their priorities by engaging the client's team and analyzing their supply chain. In this phase, we pinpoint potential risks and identify opportunities to assess and mitigate those risks.


After analyzing a client’s supply chain, we design a scope of work that addresses the client’s priorities, mitigates potential risks and takes opportunities to move the needle forward in sustainability. It could be a custom program, a policy, a partnership, or something else!


This phase involves carrying out the project created in the “design” phase and making recommendations for next steps. This project might be something from the list of our services below—or something completely new! After making recommendations for next steps, we can also work with the client to implement the recommended changes in their supply chain. For example, we can help clients track progress and measure results to ultimately increase transparency and communicate impact.

Our Services

Providing Customized Services to Advance Sustainability

Sustainable Food Group provides organizations with a variety of services to advance sustainability throughout the supply chain, from farm to retail. Each service is customized to achieve every client’s specific goals, such as food waste, plastic reduction, pollinators, integrated pest management and more.

Pesticide Risk Assessment

The Pesticide Risk Assessment helps companies understand pesticide risk hot spots, by crop, in their supply chain, setting the stage for high-impact pesticide reduction, risk mitigation efforts and/or supplier engagement.

Agricultural Risk Assessment

The Agricultural Risk Assessment allows companies to identify agricultural risk hot spots in their supply chain and sets them up to take meaningful action to address these risks. To accomplish this, Sustainable Food Group conducts a comprehensive evaluation of environmental and social risk, by crop, in a company’s agricultural supply chain.

Supply Chain Engagement

Supply chain engagement via surveys and interviews can help companies establish sustainability baselines and show progress toward goals when communicating with stakeholders. They can also inform practices and policies that improve environmental and economic supply chain sustainability.

IPM Plan Development and Review

Custom templates and resources can help growers and suppliers implement and maintain integrated pest management (IPM) practices, which reduce pesticide risk for workers, pollinators and the environment.

Custom Supply Chain Program

A custom program may be the best fit for your company if you have specific sustainability objectives that you are looking to develop, verify and/or report on over time.

Projects & Initiatives

Growing Sustainability in Agriculture

Performing a pesticide risk assessment in priority crops and identifying strategies to drive high impact changes

Using a pesticide risk analysis, an agricultural risk analysis and supplier engagement to ultimately inform a roadmap of recommendations to drive high impact change over time

Apple Talk: Working with Growers over the Phone to Achieve Sustainability Goals

Assessing Integrated Pest Management Adoption with General Mills

Developing the Sustainable Food Group Sustainability Standard

Ecoapple®: Developing an Eco-Label with Impact

EFI: Measuring Pesticide-Related Risks

Establishing Sysco as an Industry Leader: Program Development for Sysco’s Fruit and Vegetable Supply Chain

Helping 75 Vietnamese Black Pepper Farmers Transition to Organic

Honeybear Brands and Sustainable Food Group Partner to Set High-Impact Sustainability Goals

IPM Institute of North America Proud to Have Worked with Walmart on Industry Leading Commitments to Help Protect Pollinator Health and Habitats

New White Paper Explores the Rise and Role of Regenerative Agriculture and Charts a Path Forward for Food Companies and AG Retailers

Performing a Pesticide Risk Assesment in Priority Crops and Identifying Strategies to Drive High Impact Changes

Proactive Supplier Engagement Allowed Panera to Identify and Phase Out High-Risk Pesticide Use Ahead of Federal Ban on Chlorpyrifos

SCS Global Services: Reviewing Temporary Pesticide Exemption Requests

Specialty Crop Grower Services: over a Decade of Helping Midwest Growers Achieve Sustainability Goals

The Potato Sustainability Alliance

The Well Earth Program: Sustainable Supply Chain Management for Frontier Co-Op

Using a Pesticide Risk Analysis, an Agricultural Risk Analysis and Supplier Engagement to Ultimately Inform A Roadmap of Recommendations to Drive High Impact Change Over Time