In Newsweek magazine's latest ranking of the environmental performance of America's 500 largest public companies, Smithfield Foods, Inc. jumped up 68 positions from its 2010 finish.
"It's obvious to me that the hard work and dedication of our employees was the main reason why our company scored a significant improvement in Newsweek's assessment of 'green' companies," said C. Larry Pope, president and chief executive officer at Smithfield Foods in a news release.
"But that said, we're certainly not satisfied. Our mission is to be the most socially responsible food producer that we can be, and we strive for continual improvement," he added.
Newsweek's 2011 Green Rankings placed Smithfield Foods at number 417, compared to 485 a year ago. The national news magazine compares the actual environmental footprints; management performance, including policies, initiatives and controversies; and reporting practices of the 500 largest U.S. companies. Newsweek teamed up with two leading environmental research organizations, Trucost and Sustainalytics, to develop the comprehensive rankings.