Greenhouse Management: We’ve heard many reports this year of growers having difficulties sourcing plastic goods from overseas in a timely manner. Tell us about East Jordan Plastics and how it is uniquely positioned to be a domestic source of horticultural supplies for the industry.
Mike Nauta: East Jordan Plastics Inc.’s operations are 100% domestic. We use primarily recycled raw materials with local labor and maintain our own fleet of trucks. This allows us to produce and ship our material and manage our customers’ expectations.
GM: East Jordan Plastics is committed to responsible and sustainable solutions in production horticulture. How are your company’s pots and trays helping growers demonstrate their commitment to sustainable practices?
MN: Our sustainable practices are in the fabric of all we do. From internal production practices, to utilizing both horticultural and post-industrial recycled plastics, to product development that reduces material usage and carbon footprint — our focus on sustainability is evident in all we do.
GM: East Jordan maintains its own 150,000-square-foot recycling facility in Michigan. How does bringing that segment of the supply chain in-house a differentiating point for East Jordan versus many of its competitors?
MN: Our recycling facility is ideally located to receive both horticultural containers and post-industrial materials. Our facility can reprocess various materials and, in turn, create new horticultural containers. We can utilize the same trucks to deliver new horticultural containers and backhaul recycled material, further reducing our overall carbon footprint.
GM: You also offer printing, labeling, and design services for growers that order pots and trays from East Jordan. Tell us about some of the options in that regard that are proving popular with your grower-clients.
MN: Our field sales team partners with retailers and growers to offer many value-added options to support plant brand initiatives. From high-quality container printing, to labeling, to tag-slotted containers, we offer multiple solutions for customization and brand enhancement. Our new, innovative line of Stadium™ containers is not only beneficial to the grower, it also offers superior brand presence for the retailers.
GM: How is supply looking, as well as grower order lead times, for pots and trays currently?
MN: We are continuing to focus on and improve lead times, with an operational focus on efficiencies and automation.