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What level of transparency makes you comfortable? We go beyond.

April 1, 2022

Transparency. Is this a greenwashed term nowadays? What does transparency really mean?

According to the dictionary, here’s the definition:

  • transparent adjective
  • a: free from pretense or deceit
  • b: easily detected or seen through
  • c: readily understood
  • d: characterized by visibility or accessibility of information especially concerning business practices

As it relates to a business, transparency is being open and straightforward about company operations. 

A transparent business might share information regarding performance, revenue, processes, sourcing, pricing, or values. Instead of hiding if something goes wrong, transparent companies should confront the issue with honesty.

Being transparent is a current business trend.

The origin of this trend likely stems from the digitization of the world. We live in a more disconnected society, yet at the same time, we have the same needs for trust that we’ve always had. The solution for many businesses is sharing information digitally via websites, email, and social media.

Transparency is not black and white. The question isn’t “Are you transparent or are you not?” but rather “How transparent are you?”

For example, trade secrets are something that can hold a business’s position above its competitors. a food company might disclose a lot about how they make their product but still have proprietary recipes. 

Another example is traceability. A company might be able to tell you lots of details about its milk. But, they source milk from lots of farms and it all gets mixed together. In this situation, how do you really know that the facts about the milk are true? Where is the accountability? 

Transparency is a great thing, but it’s become over-promoted and “greenwashed”.

Greenwashing is when a false impression is conveyed by providing misleading information about how a company’s products are “green”, environmentally sound, or natural.

Let’s take the “certified organic” label as an example. A farm could be “certified organic” but still has its animals living mostly inside, its ruminant animals eating grain, and artificial (yet “certified for organic”) ingredients in its products. As a result, its food may not be as nutritious, eco-conscious, or humanely raised as other farms, “certified organic” or not.

Yes, “certified organic” is a step in the right direction. However, because of greenwashing, the label has lost some integrity. Discerning consumers don’t trust it like they might have before.

Don’t get me wrong. A push for more transparency is a good thing. However, we all should be aware of what transparency really is and what level of transparency you are comfortable with.

Your comfort level might change based on the food. You might have super high transparency standards for the milk in your fridge, but you might only care if your avocados are “certified organic”. That’s ok. It’s your choice.

At Miller’s, transparency is everything. The reason Miller’s is able to offer such a high level of transparency is because almost everything we do is traceable.

For nearly every product we sell, we know the farmers, the feed suppliers, the processors, and the exact ingredients used. In today’s food world, that is rare.

Miller’s believes that you deserve to know everything about your food so you can make educated decisions.

We provide a TON of information on our website, not only on the regular pages but also on the product pages. 

On top of that, we open the line of communication. Have a question? Just send us an email, which is the fastest and best way to get help with anything you need.

We usually know the answer to most questions. But… if we don’t, we go farther. We will reach out to the farmer or the producer to get the answer for you. Hey, maybe we’ll even do some research of our own, because we also love learning about food and farming!

If you value transparency, why not take it a step further? I mean, nothing beats real life and actually seeing how the food is raised and made. That’s why we’re hosting our annual Farm Day event on May 21

Farm Day is a chance to see firsthand where your food comes from and meet the people that make it a reality. This year, you’ll even get to meet some of our vendors and experience what it’s like to pack an order on the farm with a Shopping Pass. Oh, and of course there will be lots of yummy nutritious food to eat, too.

Have you ever asked a business a question and didn’t get a good answer? What are the burning questions that you need to know about your food? And, are you coming to Farm Day?

I’d love to hear from you. Comment below (no account required) or contact us.

PS: Did you know you can click on a product and learn more!? You can read about how it tastes or how it was produced, the exact ingredients, the farming protocols, and health and cooking tips.

Marie Reedell

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