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Earth Month 2022: 100 Years of Sustainable Solutions


A family-owned-and-operated business celebrating 100 years in 2022, Shamrock Foods Co. focused on sustainability from its inception. The Markon member’s laser-focused attention to sustainable solutions is one of many reasons why industry veteran Tim Manness works for the company. We chat with him for the next installment of our Earth Month series that highlights the partners who share Markon’s commitment to people and the planet.

Tim is a 35-year hospitality professional who acts as a business solutions manager at Shamrock. “Shamrock, along with Markon, feels like it’s our responsibility to future generations to protect and nourish the environments that we are in.” Tim works with many younger chefs, and adopting sustainable practices appears to be “a much more important component in their lives than it was in mine,” he admits. “That’s because they’re teaching sustainability practices now in culinary schools about waste reduction, pollution prevention, farm management, and more.”

Shamrock, and the other Markon members, offers its chef customers an opportunity to experience the fields of Markon’s growers in person each year. They get to hang with Markon’s full-time inspectors, better known as Boots in the Field, as they check product quality, growing conditions, worker welfare, overall sanitation, and more. That way, they get to see the hard work put into Markon First Crop and Ready-Set-Serve produce. For many, these tours help effect changes in their kitchens. “I think you have a lot of chefs who are really serious about animal welfare, carbon footprint, or general food waste and take this more serious than past generations,” said Tim.

In recent years, he’s watched Shamrock customers build smaller, more efficient kitchens. He’s seeing this in the hotel industry and especially with food trucks, ghost kitchens, and some food hall operators, who typically share space. “I think that’s going to be something that stays with our industry as more and more people find success and understand that they can do this more cost effectively,” says Tim. “The industry is definitely trying to change for the better.”

Visit Shamrock Foods Co. to find out more.

Markon premium produce is available exclusively from these distributors:

Gordon Food Service Gordon Food Service – Canada Shamrock Foods Company Nicholas and Company Ben E. Keith Foods

Diners are increasingly hyper-focused on high-protein and plant-based foods. Alongside all of the new-fangled, lab-based, cell-cultured options out there is the humble bean. A staple food for millenia, beans are being re-examined as a healthy, versatile ingredient worthy of menu inclusion.

  • Retro and heirloom recipes—like Southern succotash, French cassoulet, and Cajun red beans and rice—fit the bill for those in search of authenticity.
  • Most world cuisines incorporate some type of bean in their classic dishes. Think feijoada in Brazil, black beans and rice with plantains in Puerto Rico, and garbanzo beans in Israel. Modern interpretations of these recipes are packed with produce and herbs.
  • The creamy texture of mung beans is proving an ideal substitute for those that are eliminating soy from their diets.