Honeybear Brands, the marketing arm of Elgin, Minn.-based Wescott Agri Products, has introduced a new program promoting earth-friendly growing practices.

TruEarth, developed by Honeybear and the Institute of Pest Management of North America, is a series of best practices including balanced nutrient profiles, improved soil fertility, the encouragement of beneficial insects and other measures, according to a Honeybear news release.

“As a family farm grower community we have a long history of caring for both the land and our growers’ livelihoods,” Don Roper, Honeybear’s vice president of marketing, said in the release. “TruEarth is the next step in formalizing all of the work we’ve been doing over the years to grow premium fruit to the highest possible standards while supporting our grower communities.”

Under the TruEarth program, growers will undergo an annual audit by the Institute of Pest Management and agree to the following practices:

  • GMO-free growing;
  • Prohibition of high toxicity pesticides;
  • Use of clean water by reducing soil erosion;
  • Energy conservation;
  • Water conservation in orchards and packing facilities;
  • Ongoing recycling of all waste; and
  • Protection of biodiversity