ESG is a lot more than a Wall Street acronym.
It is dominating board room discussions and business decisions in publicly traded companies across the country, and it is one reason U.S. businesses were so quick to turn their backs on Russia after Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine.
ESG stands for Environment, Social, and Governance, and it reflects the understandable expectation that corporate America will act responsibly towards investors, workers, customers, the environment, and society as a whole.
As the CEO of a publicly traded company that invests in farmland, ESG is a responsibility I take seriously. As someone who has been involved in production agriculture for much of my life, it’s something that comes naturally.
When I think of ESG as it relates to our company, I start with the core belief that everyone on the planet has the right to eat.
Providing nourishment to all people and reducing starvation is non-negotiable in my mind. Therefore, decisions should not be made in the name of ESG that reduce food production and create greater food insecurity around the globe.
For example, we wouldn’t expect our tenants to shun proven technologies or alter their crop rotations at the expense of food affordability because a handful of vocal opponents have competing agendas.
The key is to maximize production while minimizing environmental impact.
We understand that farmland and the farmers who cultivate it today create a more sustainable future for all by affordably feeding the world’s growing population in an environmentally responsible way. …