Connecting Employees and Local Society through Vegetable Gardening and Learning Biodiversity in France
Alsachim SAS, a Shimadzu group company in France, has been taking initiatives to offer employees opportunities to exchange ideas with coworkers and create connections to the local community. As part of their initiatives, Alsachim made corporate gardens and beehives collaboratively with two partners, and they held various workshops to raise awareness of biodiversity.
Alsachim – a Shimadzu Group Company -
Alsachim is a Shimadzu group company with about 50 employees located in Strasbourg, specializing in the development and production of stable isotope-labelled standards.
In 2017, Alsachim became a part of Shimadzu Group, enhancing its portfolio to offer comprehensive solutions in clinical research and bio-analytical fields and to maintain long-term relationships with customers.
Throughout the COVID-19 situation, Shimadzu and Alsachim have been supporting drug development and clinical trials by providing instruments and internal standards for LC/MS assays of anti-COVID-19 drug candidates.
Seasonal Vegetable Gardens
In this gardening project, Noocity, Alsachim’s collaborative partner, organized several workshops.
First, the participants from Alsachim learned about vegetables and proper methods of gardening. For instance, they learned which vegetables are suitable for the region’s environment and climate, and how to cultivate the gardens in line with the laws of nature.
Then, based on the knowledge they learned in a workshop and from an experienced grower of Noocity, employees discussed their cultivation plan during their lunch break.
As a result, various vegetables, including lettuce, radishes, kale, leeks, strawberry plants, garlic, and shallots, were planted to make the corporate gardens.
Strawberry planted in the corporate garden
Noocity's goal is to build long-term communities through vegetable gardening and to help people connect with themselves, others, and nature. It is good for developing healthy habits that benefit both people and the planet. Based on this value, Noocity has already installed about 70 gardens at the site of various companies, international institutions, and schools.
Thus, Alsachim and Noocity joined their motivations and objectives to provide Alsachim employees with a long-term project of a corporate garden.
Beehives and Beekeepers
In addition to creating a corporate garden, another environmental and social project was developed at the same time. Alsachim set up three beehives in a green area on the company premises, as part of their efforts to raise awareness of biodiversity.
For this project, Alsachim’s employees listed to some lectures by a beekeeper from Asapistra, another collaborative partner of Alsachim, to learn how to protect bees and the environment around beehives so that they can maintain and monitor their bees and beehives by themselves for a long time.
Comment from Participants
Three participants from Alsachim made the following comments.
It makes me feel better even in my job to be involved in environmental preservation as a member of the company. This project provided a good opportunity to learn about and cultivate a vegetable garden, especially for those who don't have a garden, like me. Also, I’m glad to get a chance for real training in beekeeping. I might never have known about bees as well as I do without this project. I am proud of what I leaned.
(Elsa Scheppler, HR Mission Officer)
I am already aware of the environment and have opportunities to garden, but it is valuable to participate in outdoor activities and share experiences with colleagues with smiles on their faces.
(Julien Kelber, Analytical and Purification Manager)
It's a good idea to have regular collaborative activities. It allows colleagues to share informal moments and reconnect with each other, which has been lacking over the past few months. In addition, the workshops are very original. I learned how a beehive works and new kinds of vegetables. What a pleasure to be able to taste the harvested products!
(Clémence Bohn, Marketing-Communication Assistant)
These projects will last for a long time as the shared goal between Alsachim and Noocity mentions. Planting and harvesting will continue to follow the rhythm of the seasons.
Alsachim employees are currently discussing their next cultivation plan and getting training to become beekeepers, which will involve continuous maintenance and monitoring of their bees and beehives. At Alsachim, another project will be launched next spring to create a small flower meadow, close to their beehives.
These projects will have a great impact on the environment, the employees’ sense of community, and the well-being and health of employees. Alsachim will create further links among employees and the local society through vegetable gardening and beekeeping.