The company aims for 100% "sustainably grown" certification.
Kemin Health LC (Des Moines, IA) has spent the last several years developing a local and sustainable rosemary-breeding program in the United States. The company says that 50% of its rosemary is now certified as “sustainably grown,” according to standards set by third-party certifier SCS Global Services. By the start of next year’s cropping season, all of Kemin’s rosemary should be certified.
Kemin grows rosemary plants on more than 1000 acres of land managed by contracted farmers in Texas and New Mexico. The resulting crop is sold for food, pet feed, nutraceutical, and personal care use. What further distinguishes Kemin’s rosemary business is a conventional breeding method that yields a consistent, yet proprietary, rosemary plant. Other rosemary suppliers source their plant from the wild, where plant characteristics are extremely varied.
“Kemin’s certification sets an important precedent for ingredient producers,” says SCS vice president Linda Brown in a Kemin press release. “It gives manufacturers of food, health, and personal care products who are concerned about the long-term sustainability of their ingredients a clear choice. It also opens the doors to potential labeling of their customers’ products down the road.”
Kemin’s sustainability initiative is the result of millions of dollars of investment. It will be interesting to see how the company’s rosemary business progresses, especially with its latest Rosamox rosemary ingredient for personal care.