From a young age, children at the dinner table are taught to count their blessings before they eat. According to Carlton Fisher, location manager for Crop Production Services (CPS), Wynne, AR, ag retailers should do the same with their stewardship practices.
“We make our living based on the blessings of the environment,” says Fisher, whose location is an Environmental Respect Award state winner. “To care for and respect that which puts food in our families’ mouths is only common sense. The ability to have a safe, affordable and abundant food supply and fiber source is one of the most important things for the longevity of our society.”
To accomplish this, CPS Wynne employees scout more than 60,000 acres on a weekly basis to ensure that the company’s products are being applied at the correct time and rate, lessening their potential impact on the surrounding environment. The retailer also conducts a twice yearly total site clean-up (in addition to its regular monthly inspections) to make certain the company is in compliance with environmental regulations and CPS policies. While the outlet doesn’t mix crop protection products itself, the outlet does have the facilities for it, and applicators will occasionally pick up and mix products on site. “They understand that best practices must be observed and label-required personal protection equipment must be worn if using our facility,” says Fisher.
CPS Wynne also does its part to share its environmental message with the community. Employees at the location talk at local schools about the ag retail business, take part in community events and even sponsor youth baseball and swim teams. The outlet even has trained firefighters as part of its staff.
“Ours is an agricultural community, so people generally do feel positive about agriculture,” says Fisher. “Therefore, ours is a more educational task, to reassure community members that agriculture’s footprint on the environment is actually beneficial and not harmful to anyone or anything. We participate in several community events and speak to the scouts and Future Farmers of America at our schools.”