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Baltimore, MD (September 27, 2007) — Jai Chaitanya, a vanilla supplier from southern India and Kurt Amoth, a peppermint grower from Washington's Yakima Valley may be worlds apart, but today they discussed their common bond during a press conference at the Natural Products Expo East. Both are partners in the new Well Earth program and both attested to its benefits to them, their communities and the environment.
Well Earth, a unique program developed by Frontier Natural Products Co-op, certifies both domestic and international growers of organic herbs and spices. The program improves the circumstances of small growers and the people in their communities worldwide with incentives and resources for organic farming, quality improvement and donations to community health, education and other infrastructure projects.
Frontier Natural Products Co-op CEO Tony Bedard and VP of Operations Cole Daily described the goals, methods, and impact of the Well Earth program. The extensive certification process requires farmers and processors to show their commitment to excellence in these areas: worker safety and fair treatment (improving the lives of workers and their families and ensuring sustainable livelihoods and growth); sustainable production (committing to sustainable practices and USDA-accredited certification of organic production); environmental responsibility (protecting and restoring the environment by minimizing the use of energy and natural resources and reducing waste and harmful emissions); community development (contributing to the quality of life in the communities where they operate); food safety and quality (providing products that are pure, authentic and meet Frontier quality standards).
A Frontier inspection team conducts ongoing on-site inspections before and after certification. Frontier’s Bedard and Daily recently traveled to India to meet with Well Earth supplier Jai Chaitanya and make a $10,000 Well Earth donation to Akshaya Patra, a charitable foundation which he founded. Every day, Akshaya Patra gives more than a half-million Indian school children a mid-day meal they would not otherwise receive.
"Seeing for myself the scale of this program and the impact it's having in fostering literacy in India is something I will never forget” Bedard said. “This is just one example of the impact that Well Earth can have on the lives of growers and others in their community."
Complete details of the Well Earth program, including the program criteria and application questionnaires, are available at www.frontiercoop.com/wellearth.
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Frontier Natural Products Co-op™
Founded in 1976 and based in Norway, Iowa, Frontier Natural Products Co-op(TM) offers a full line of natural and organic products under the Frontier, Simply Organic®, Aura Cacia® and Aura Cacia Organics® brands. Products include culinary herbs, spices and baking flavors; bulk herbs and spices; and natural and organic aromatherapy products. Frontier's goal is to provide consumers with the highest-quality organic and natural products while supporting and promoting social and environmental responsibility. For more information, visit Frontier's website at www.frontiercoop.com.