Social responsibility

Our goal is to create a culture that is empowering, diverse and socially oriented, supporting the communities we engage with locally. Our social pillar encompasses how we support our employees and how we support the communities in which we live and work.

Plant Health Care conducted a survey asking employees about their experience at the Company and perceptions of a range of workplace issues. These included company management and leadership, communication of strategic goals, opportunities for career growth and employee engagement. The management team was pleased by the survey responses and learned of two areas where there was more that could be done to support our employees: Employee Training and Communications.

The survey identified the opportunity to focus on employee training to support career development. As a relatively small company there are not always traditional routes to career growth and advancement within the company. Recognizing that employee engagement and long- term retention is enhanced by the availability of new challenges and ongoing learning opportunities, company management has implemented regular meetings with each employee to create and implement a professional growth and training plan based on each employee’s needs and preferences. In the long run, we are confident this initiative will lead to greater employee satisfaction and a better trained workforce.

The survey also revealed that company priorities were not always being communicated clearly throughout the company. When priorities changed, the rationale for such changes was not always communicated throughout the organization. While we had previously established quarterly company-wide ‘townhall’ meetings to share financial and operational performance updates as well as strategy updates, the survey results indicated we could do a better job cascading information throughout the organization. As a result, after each future townhall meeting, members of the management team will meet with their employees to answer any questions around company priorities or other matters that may have been discussed during the meeting. Because our employees are located throughout the US, Brazil, Mexico, Spain and the UK and come from multiple backgrounds it is critical that we engage our employees through multiple channels to ensure we develop a common understanding of the company’s vision and are aligned around common goals. We continue to look for opportunities to build community within our global workforce as a means of leveraging our collective experience and expertise.

Providing a competitive benefits package is important for the well-being of our people as well as ensuring that the company is well situated to attract the best talent. During the past year, our existing health insurance provider reduced health care coverage. As a result, the company switched to another benefits provider that offers more comprehensive health insurance benefits at a lower cost to the company and its employees.

Operationally, we are proud to support our people and contribute to the local communities in which we work and live. An example of our resilient and adaptable culture is the way Plant Health Care embraced the new hybrid office-home work model that employees have consistently indicated they prefer over the traditional full-time in-office model. While this accommodation was initially adopted as a response to Covid-19, having now seen how it enables employees to optimize their workdays to take care of their families and other personal obligations, we plan to maintain this hybrid work model. This change also reduces miles driven commuting to the office, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

At PHC we know it is vital that our people understand what makes our products unique and how our products fit within modern agricultural practices. We provide our employees with extensive training, which consists of an overview of the Company and discussion of how our products are used by farmers and the results obtained. We provide our team with opportunities to better understand the use of our products and how the products help growers address the challenges they face daily. As a technology-driven company, it is important that our people understand our products and can accurately speak about how they contribute to sustainable agriculture and the specific benefits provided to our customers.

In 2022, PHC initiated an annual Global Day of Service to provide its employees a meaningful opportunity to give back to the communities in which we live and work by volunteering their time in support of local charitable organizations. In North Carolina, the Holly Springs team spent a morning at the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina to help address food insecurity in our community by packing single-serving juice packs. In 2023, the Holly Springs team spent a morning at the Holly Springs Food Cupboard tending the gardens. In Spain, the Plant Health Care team lent their help in the daily tasks to the residents in a charitable home supported by the work of the Franciscan White Fathers of La Casa de Nazareth in Almeria.