Strategic Planning for the Leafy Greens Industry

In 2016, the California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement (LGMA) engaged BCI to support and facilitate a strategic planning process to navigate the evolving landscape of food safety in the U.S.

The Challenge

For ten years, the California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement (LGMA) has played an essential role in developing a culture of food safety and ultimately ensuring the safety of spinach, lettuce, and other leafy green products grown in California.  Indeed, the LGMA program has become the gold standard for on-the-farm food safety.  However, with advances in science, implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and growing attention to food safety throughout the supply chain, LGMA must continue to adapt to an increasingly complex and rapidly evolving landscape in order to serve the industry’s enduring commitment to ensuring safe leafy greens. 

To address this challenge, LGMA recently undertook a planning process to assess its strategic environment and develop a new strategic plan for 2017 and beyond.  LGMA asked Bryant Christie Inc. (BCI) to lay the groundwork and facilitate this process. 

The LGMA staff and Advisory Board were extremely pleased with the outcome of our strategic planning process done with Bryant Christie Inc....The BCI team are true professionals and we highly recommend their work.

Scott Horsfall, LGMA Executive Director

Our Solution

BCI reached out to a broad cross-section of LGMA’s stakeholders, speaking with key commercial buyers of leafy greens, state and national regulatory agencies with responsibility for implementing FSMA, the handlers of leafy greens who make up LGMA’s membership, and growers who must implement the on-the-farm food safety measures.  Through in-depth interviews, BCI uncovered the diverse needs and challenges of the marketplace, the suppliers, and the regulatory community.  The resulting insights were synthesized to provide LGMA’s leadership with vital intelligence to inform its strategic decisions. 

BCI then facilitated the deliberations of LGMA’s Advisory Board at a two-day strategic planning retreat – helping these leaders to explore the complex challenges and areas of uncertainty, distill their key priorities, and develop the best strategies for attaining LGMA’s most important strategic goals.  To complete the process, BCI supported the work of LGMA’s professional staff as they established a concrete implementation plan and performance metrics to ensure that the Board’s strategic plan will be realized.

According to Scott Horsfall, Executive Director of the LGMA, “The LGMA staff and Advisory Board were extremely pleased with the outcome of our strategic planning process done with Bryant Christie Inc.  Julie Cerenzia is an excellent facilitator who made this sometimes tedious process enjoyable.  Beyond that, we were very happy with the final product.  The BCI team are true professionals and we highly recommend their work.”

Ongoing Success

Following the adoption of its 2017 strategic plan, LGMA turned to BCI for further assistance in understanding buyer needs.  BCI’s research will refine and deepen LGMA’s understanding of the emerging needs of the marketplace and how best to meet those needs, allowing LGMA to maintain its relevance and leadership in the food safety arena.