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Doing the Right Thing: One Cashew at a Time

By Catherine Jura


You are cordially invited to be part of a new way of doing business.  

The Triple Bottom Line is a framework that measures a business’s success in three key areas: profit, people, and the planet. Imagine a company that produces 175 organic products and puts people and the planet BEFORE profits. Tierra Farm is that company.  

Started in the Finger Lakes in 1999-- and opened for business in Valatie, NY in 2006--Tierra Farm (TF) uses an “authentic” approach to growing, sourcing, and handcrafting its products. Manufactured in a peanut-free facility, all of their products are certified organic and certified gluten-free. Their offerings include dried fruits, seeds, nuts, coffee, tea, chocolate, trail mix, granolas, nut butters, spices, syrup, and honey. So how does TF continually put people and the planet before profits?  

Four communities work together to bring Mother Earth’s bounty to you, the food enthusiast. 

  • Staff: The staff of 35 is revered and treated so.  Everyone’s ideas and input are encouraged across all aspects of the business.  Got an idea for a new product? Share it with the team.

    Automation is practically out of the question. Yes, there is a roaster for the coffee beans but where a person can be hired, they are. All staff receives a Living Wage of at least $20 per hour; a comprehensive health benefits package; and a retirement plan. 

    “Living walls”-- walls covered with plants growing in containers--are found throughout TF. While they are known to reduce noise, increase creativity, and enhance a sense of well-being, the staff just really likes them. Staff retention is very high.  
  • Customers: TF no longer participates in social media or paid advertising. They encourage their independent-thinking customers to do research on products that interest them--and find the truth for themselves--rather than relying on third-party information. TF believes that if you have an amazing product, people will find you organically, and the company will grow--time has proven this to be true. 

  • Farmers: TF buys from US and international farmers and many relationships are over a decade old. TF’s level of knowledge-- and communication with the farmers-- allows TF to guarantee fair business practices (including Fair Trade certification) across their supply chain. 

  • Honest Weight and Tierra Farm: Honest Weight (HW) was one of TF’s first customers. Cameron Boll (Chief Operating Officer) started at TF in sales/marketing and did in-store demos at HW. One of his favorite memories was watching a customer’s face light up when they tasted a new product. When asked where they could get the item, Cam would walk them over to the appropriate bin in the Bulk department. TF treasures this ongoing relationship with HW.  


Tierra Farm is continually innovating to honor, and protect, Mother Earth. 

  • Eliminating Plastics: TF’s goal is to eliminate ALL single-use plastic from their manufacturing, packaging, and delivery practices and move to sustainable/compostable products by the end of 2023. For the past year, they have been working with several companies including Elevate Packaging to re-work the compostable packaging as it continues to be tested in the market. Currently, 98% of individual products (i.e. bags of nuts) are in compostable packaging. In addition, TF offers a no-cost Take Back program: return the compostable bags to the retail store or mail them back in the pre-paid mailers and TF will compost them for you.

    Other initiatives include oil/spices in recyclable glass with compostable labels and replacing plastic tops with metal. As of this printing, TF will have moved to compostable pallet wrap. TF wants to “get it right with packaging.” 
  • Products and Other Initiatives: All 175 products sold by TF are certified organic. This commitment supports biodiversity, enhances the planet’s soil, and conserves fresh water.

    Currently, seventy percent of TF’s electricity comes from solar panels. Sixty percent of waste is recycled. Delivery boxes are made from recycled cardboard. TF is continually looking for better ways to protect the planet. 


“Shared Responsibility” is a concept that places the cost of taking care of people and the planet on both customers and TF. Yes, there has been an occasional price increase. And TF has devoted millions of dollars to bring their Mission Statement to fruition: “. . . [a] mindful approach to growing, sourcing, and handcrafting our organic foods puts the people we serve and the planet we share before everything else. Because a common concern for each other and our world is our best chance for the healthy future we all crave.” (Source: website) 

Cajun cashews anyone? TF products can be found in the Honest Weight Bulk section, purchased online through their website (, or in their retail store in Valatie, NY.   

TF would love to hear from you. Send in your recipes using TF products, composting tips, ideas for the Blog, and other ideas for sharing to 


Bio: Catherine Jura has had a 40 year love affair with food and the people who bring it to us. She enjoys the outdoors, reading, people, and laughing.  Member-owner (eight years).

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