Over the years we have adapted our business to meet the needs of many customers from independent retailers right through to national supermarkets.
To successfully supply this range of businesses we operate crop management policies on all our farms, both in the UK and overseas and comply with many different production standards and schemes including Tesco Nurture, M&S Field to Fork and Leaf Marque.
Our farms in Spain and the USA have Global GAP accreditation and our UK farms have Red Tractor Farm Assurance Fresh Produce Scheme accreditation which has Global GAP equivalence.
We are also members of SEDEX which allows us to share ethical data with our supply chain.
These schemes cover various environmental standards and good agricultural practices, including pesticide usage, pollution prevention and protection of human health, as well as specifying such things as shape, size, taste, variety and shelf life requirements.
We also produce organic watercress which in the UK is certified by the Soil Association and Spain is certified by CAAE.
All of our products are grown under strict microbiological controls to reduce the potential for any contamination of our crops. Monitoring is carried out on a regular basis to ensure that the controls are working correctly, These controls are reviewed as a minimum of annually, or whenever there is a step change in the process or risk analysis.
The Watercress Company is always striving to improve and develop our management practices in conjunction with our staff and the schemes including:
Reductions in fertiliser and pesticide usage
Overhead irrigation to reduce insect levels
Shaker belts on harvesters to reduce insect contaminants
Efficiencies in energy and water usage
Microbiological management, monitoring and controls
Enhancement of wildlife habitats