NEW YORK — Kind Healthy Snacks has announced plans to exclusively source its almonds from bee-friendly farmland by 2025. Almonds are the main ingredient in most of Kind’s products and its No. 1 ingredient by both volume and spend.
Kind said it is expecting its almond suppliers to reserve 3% to 5% of their farmland for dedicated pollinator habitat to support bees, butterflies and other pollinators. In addition, Kind said it is working with its suppliers to eliminate any use of neonicotinoids and chlorpyrifos, two pesticide treatments that are thought to be harmful to pollinators.
“We have been energized and inspired by the leadership demonstrated by some of our peers and partners to more actively protect pollinators,” said Daniel Lubetzky, founder and executive chairman of Kind. “We are also incredibly proud that many of our almond suppliers have led the way, proving that incorporating more bee-friendly practices is not just good for pollinators, but also good for business.
“But we can do more to make these practices central to the way the almond industry does business. While we know we can’t do it alone, we are proud to lend our voice and scale to call for this much needed change.”
According to Kind, less than 20,000 acres of top almond producer California’s 1.53 million acres are verified as bee-friendly.
“This commitment from Kind to increase pollinator habitat on almond orchards will provide substantial, long-term environmental benefits for soil health, water retention and regional biodiversity in California’s Central Valley,” said Daniel Kaiser, director of conservation strategies at Environmental Defense Fund. “This initiative is just the type of supply chain signal that can facilitate farmer adoption of practices that will bolster the resilience of their orchards.”
Kind cited several factors affecting bee health, including poor nutrition due to unvaried habitats and pesticide exposure.
The Kind Foundation has announced it will make a $150,000 investment in the Williams Lab at the University of California, Davis to help answer critical questions about bee health and track the efficacy of these farm-level improvements.