For the folks at Helena Chemical in Bay, AR, their actions tend to speak louder than words, according to Scott Bass, operations manager. “Educating the surrounding community about our role in agriculture is not something that is verbalized often, but something that is seen every day through our actions and the actions of our representatives.”
Community outreach is an area of Environmental Respect Award criteria where Helena Bay shines, as the operation financially supports local youth sports, businesses, churches and schools whenever they can. This philosophy allows the company to maintain a visible presence in the local community.
“Through spending time daily in the local community, we illustrate through our safety procedures and conduct that we want to set the standard when it comes to simply taking care of our environment,” says Bass.
The enlightenment of its grower-customers is also a concern for Helena Bay, says Bass. “We use continuing education through grower programs and meetings to bring them up to date on the latest codes, regulations and policies that we follow and are put in place to protect the environment.”
The company is also involved in assisting with local FFA events, which provides Helena Bay a great platform to “make our message known.”
“I don’t think that anyone will ever be able to get the message of environmental respect out alone, but as a group of retailers we can play a vital role in all of our communities,” adds Bass.
The Helena Bay philosophy when it comes to environmental respect is an all-hands-on-deck approach. “It is the responsibility of every individual to steward our natural resources and environment to ensure a future that is safe and sustainable for future generations,” says Bass. “As role players in the world of agriculture, we realize it starts with us at the ground level.”
And, although those pesky EPA regulations and fines for non-compliance compel most to take environmental respect seriously, for Helena Bay it is a high calling.
“We have to lead by example and teach future generations how to respect the natural environment and pass it on to future generations,” he adds. “It is not something that is done simply because of government regulations, but it’s an investment in the longevity of our communities.”
Note: Helena Chemical in Bay, AR, is a 2012 state Environmental Respect Award winner. For more information on this program, which is sponsored by DuPont, click here.