Our Goal: To reduce the amount of water
used to grow food.
We only give our crops the precise amount of water that they need, conserving this precious resource while responsibly growing healthy crops.
We employ innovative new technologies to reduce the amount of water we use to grow food. On average, the California almond industry applies more than 3.5 acre feet of water to its orchards each year. Pomona’s statewide average is 2.6, and on some almond orchards as low as 2.4 acre feet.
We Never Overpump
In agriculture, it is not uncommon for farmers to overpump and overdraw their wells to the point of collapse. This means an aquifer can never be refilled again. We minimize pumping because our orchards and farms have 2 sources of water – surface water from a water district and groundwater. In fact, our farming operations actually add more water into the basins (called additive recharge) because we bring surface water in and irrigate so efficiently.
In our efforts to reduce water evaporation, improve water absorption, provide dust control and promote soil health, we have planted over 5,900 acres (2,400 ha) of cover crops with a goal to double that by 2025.
Smarter Irrigation through Penetrants
Water and carbon penetrants improve penetration depths of irrigation, helping tress absorb water better, thus requiring less water overall. In 2020, water and carbon penetrants were applied on 17% of the producing farmland, and by 2023 we will utilize the products on over 33% of our California orchards. To date we have saved 15% of projected irrigation.
Sustainable Irrigation through Technology
We utilize micro drip irrigation and microsprinkler systems (which conserve water by applying it directly to the trees’ roots rather than the entire field) on all of our farmlands. In 2020, we installed WiseConn, an automated irrigation system, on 22% of our developed farmlands. WiseConn utilizes remote control programming to implement pulsed irrigation and “spoonfed” fertigation.* We are working toward complete installation on 32% of our Californian orchards by 2025.
*This fertilizer application method combined with pulsed irrigation enables nutrients to be placed in the root zone of the tree in small quantities that the plants are best able to process.