Stronger food safety and sustainability requirements are leading to a 2020 deadline for food suppliers of corporate brand products at Rimi, one of the leading retailers in the Baltic States. Consequently, the demand for GLOBALG.A.P. farm certification will likely rise in the Baltics. And the sector is ready to take on the challenge. That was the consensus among the 160 delegates of the GLOBALG.A.P. Tour Stop conference, held at the Latvian University of Live Science and Technologies, in Jelgava near Riga on 20 March 2019.
“Dedication for sustainability and knowledge about food safety as well as agricultural and food technology is widespread in Latvia,“said Irina Pilvere, Rector of the Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies in her opening address. Kristian Moeller, CEO of GLOBALG.A.P. added: “And with the support of our new country partner, the Latvian Rural Advisory and Training Center, we have laid the foundation for a country-wide adoption of GLOBALG.A.P. standards.” Rimi Baltic accepts GLOBALG.A.P. as valid Quality Assurance scheme for fruits, vegetables and flowers. Certification targets are set for the corporate brand for Quality Assurance on 90% and for Social Compliance on 100% with the deadline of 2020 for food suppliers and manufacturers.
“We are ready and keen to start a fruitful collaboration with GLOBALG.A.P., in particular with their Technical Key Account Manager Edite Strazdina, based in Latvia,” responded Martins Cimermanis, the Chairman of the Board of the Advisory and Training Center. “Our plan is to make this global farm assurance standard an integral part of our nationwide services.”
Both organizations signed their formal partner agreement at the end of the conference day.
International participants from Lithuania, Estonia, Ukraine, and Poland took part in the ceremony.
Rimi Baltic is one of the fastest growing retailers in the Baltic states. It operates three chains that are favorite among customers – Rimi Supermarkets, Rimi hypermarkets, and hard discount chain Supernetto. The company employs over 12 300 people in all three Baltic countries. It is a subsidiary of Swedish group ICA Sverige. Rimi Baltic operates 261 retail stores in Estonia (86 stores), Latvia (125 stores) and Lithuania (57 stores).