June 3, 2020
In Solidarity, A Letter From Our CEO
Dear AeroFarms Friends & Community,
Like so many others, I am saddened, disturbed, and outraged at the clear injustices exemplified in the recent deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and the countless other victims of systemic racism in our country. These are not isolated incidents and we cannot allow any more BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) to suffer within a system that is supposed to equally protect and elevate all its citizens. As a company, we stand in solidarity with the City of Newark, our BIPOC team members, community, friends and neighbors during this important time in our nation’s history. We are making time to listen, learn, and reflect on how we can do better.
As an individual, while it is difficult for me as a white man growing up with white privilege to put myself in the shoes of our BIPOC community, I commit to making an effort to understand and support this critical cause as much as possible. I am not yet sure of everything I can do, but I commit to listening, learning, and advocating for justice whenever possible. I commit to making space for our team to engage in the uncomfortable, difficult, & important conversations necessary to move our society forward.
On Monday at our HQ in Newark, NJ, our team met to discuss, and several people shared their thoughts and feelings to the group in the spirit of expressing empathy and commitment to come together in our broader communities. We will continue to brainstorm together as the days and weeks go on, but here are a few of the ways that we are already committed to building further on:
- Use our platform to actively fight racism, hate, and injustice & promote solutions on how to work towards a better system
- Support and amplify BIPOC voices, businesses and leadership in our communities that are on the front lines of social injustice
- Check in regularly with BIPOC friends, community members, and co-workers and support them in any way they need
- Use our access to work with local and federal politicians and policy makers on systemic change moving forward
As a mission-driven B-Corp Certified company, AeroFarms is proud to work alongside the many diverse members of our community, and we will continue to emphasize inclusivity and work to stomp out racism. Since Day 1, we are proud to have worked closely with Senators Booker and Menendez and Mayor Baraka and the broader community to help create a more level playing field by creating year round employment with meaningful wages and benefits, by addressing food deserts and increasing access to healthier food options, by creating educational opportunities working with schools like Philips Academy Charter school in Newark NJ, and by offering second chances through the NJ Reentry Program.
We will continue to be proactive in our everyday lives to change our society for the better and to avoid future tragedies, and we fundamentally believe that it is not only our responsibility but also our duty.
“In a racist society, it is not enough to be non-racist, we must be anti-racist.” – Angela Davis
Please let me know your thoughts at Ask.David@AeroFarms.com
Co Founder and CEO of AeroFarms