Fresh water is crucial to maintaining healthy ecosystems, keeping faucets running in the homes of our neighbors, and allowing our independent growers to continue to grow fresh berries. As a result, Driscoll’s has identified water stewardship as the first phase and highest priority of environmental sustainability efforts.
 
Our goal is to assure the health of water resources in the regions where we operate.  To do this, we work alongside growers, community stakeholders, water authorities, and non-governmental organizations to advocate for and support responsible groundwater management practices and laws. 
 

Our Approach  

 
Water is a shared resource, which means everyone must work together to ensure it’s being managed well to keep communities, businesses, and ecosystems healthy in the long-term. That is why Driscoll’s takes an approach that is: 
 
Driscoll's approach to water infographic 
Our Impact
Here are examples of a few ways we’re working with independent growers, community leaders, and government to ensure we’re being good stewards of local water supplies. 
 
Advocacy
Driscoll’s was one of the earliest supporters of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act which, for the first time in California’s history, creates a framework to reach balanced levels within high and medium priority areas by 2042. 
 
We also supported the development of statewide policy and funding to assure safe and affordable water for California communities affected by infrastructure gaps, drought, or water contamination.
 
In 2009, before SGMA was signed into law, we established a community-led forum to better manage water usage in the community called the Pajaro Valley Community Dialogue. Through the work of this group and an opportunity to collaborate, they established an extensive wireless irrigation network which saw 30-40% water savings for those that used it. 
 
Industry Collaboration
Driscoll’s works with a variety of non-profit and university partners to further our reach and expand the information and resources available to the community to better manage this valuable resource.  For example, in 2015, Driscoll’s joined other industry leaders in the non-profit Ceres’s Connect the Drops campaign. This encouraged business to make a commitment to conserving water and add their voices to influence water management policy at a state level. This campaign was instrumental in getting two efficiency measures passed which will help make water conversation a way of life for Californians.      
 
Efficiency & Innovation
Driscoll’s works with growers to reduce usage and explore alternative water sources that limit non-renewable sources. For example, in our Oxnard region, nearly two-thirds of our growers adopted micro-sprinklers which save up to 40% of water used during plant establishment when compared to traditional methods. 
 
Also, in the Bokariza Basin, Driscoll’s is collaborating with UCSC and independent growers to pilot the collection of storm water on farms to replenish aquifers. To learn more about this project.
 
To learn more about our water stewardship initiatives from our Senior Manager of Global Environmental Impact and the Environmental Defense Fund, click here