We are excited to bring you the Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) for its third year! The TxN 20 is an effort to recognize the best work in conservation coming from businesses operating and based in Texas. It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment, and best practices from a variety of industries.
To select the 2021 TxN 20, the TxN Team evaluated submissions as well as conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies within 12 industry sectors. All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system to narrow down the list of the top 60 companies in Texas. A selection committee of top industry leaders was formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final honorees for the TxN 20.
Texas leads the nation in number of farms and ranches, with 248,416 farms and ranches covering 127 million acres, making up 73 percent of a state that’s 95 percent privately owned. Not only do these lands provide food and fiber for the world, they also provide critical wildlife habitat and ecosystem services to the 29.1 million Texans that call the Lone Star State home. From 1997 – 2017 there was a net loss of 2.2 million acres of working lands to non-agricultural use. Texas ingenuity within the agriculture industry is helping produce more with less and increase environmental stewardship along the way.
Learn more about the 2021 TxN 20 honorees from the agriculture industry and see a list of industry highlights below.
2021 Honoree: Alamo Group
Alamo Group is a global leader in the design and manufacture of high quality agricultural equipment for farms and ranches and infrastructure maintenance equipment for governmental and industrial markets. In 2020, Alamo Group announced their 2025 targets, and they are proud to report that they are on track to meet these targets with approximately 20% of their total electric energy already coming from renewable energy and recycling nearly 85% of their total waste. Additionally, employees of Alamo Group are also closely involved with conservation efforts during events like their Annual Geronimo and Alligator Creek Cleanup event where employees and their families collected nearly a ton of trash and cleared nine miles of roadways and creek banks.
2021 Honoree: Sanderson Farms
For the second consecutive year, Sanderson Farms has been selected as a TxN 20 Honoree. Sanderson Farms is one of the largest poultry producers in the United States. Resource conservation and sustainable operations are incorporated throughout their operations. Sanderson Farms quantitatively tracks their financial return on investments in conservation and sustainability efforts, marking the importance of sustainability beyond just environmental preservation. In fiscal year, their financial return on their investment in conservation was $2,418,000 with $1,418,000 through biogas savings and over $1,000,000 through water reuse systems.
Read the full honoree Q&A write-ups and read the 2021 press release
In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, learn more about best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the agriculture industry.
- Darling Ingredients is currently developing low emission goods and services through a joint initiative called Diamond Green Diesel. This initiative recycles animal fats, used cooking oil, and inedible corn oil into renewable diesel fuel to reduce carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions. In 2019, they reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 85%, which equates to 2.4 million megatons of carbon dioxide. Darling Ingredients was a 2019 TxN 20 honoree.
- Since 2014, the Audubon Conservation Ranching (ACR) program has worked with beef producers, state and federal agency partners, industry experts, and other NGOs to develop an innovative, producer-centered, market-based certification program. ACR established an innovative, market-based approach that connects conservation conscious consumers to farmers and ranchers that employ bird-friendly management practices in raising their livestock. Based in Texas, Burgundy Pasture Beef, raises grass fed cattle on Audubon-certified bird-friendly land.
- Bee A Solution is a commercial apiary whose mission is to provide solutions to save threatened honeybee population through actively contributing in the apiculture industry by creating stationary pollinator habitats, migrating colonies for pollination, and sustainably producing honey for sale. Most commercial apiaries observe a 20-50% loss of their colonies due to environmental and health stressors while Bee A Solution’s sustainable practices have produced a 0% loss of colonies over the course of 4 years.
- In 2020, Tyson Foods, Inc. became the first food company in the United States to verify sustainable beef production in their supply chain through their BeefCARE program. This program ensures that their cattle is sourced through verified producers that promote practices that positively impact the land and animals.
- Pilgrim’s Pride aligns their sustainability targets to the UN SDG goals. In 2020, they met their goals of reducing greenhouse gas emission intensity by 14% and natural gas use intensity by 17%. Additionally, this year, they set a goal to reach a net-zero target by 2040.