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GLOBALG.A.P. launched new GGN Label

GLOBALG.A.P. launched the GGN label © GLOBALG.A.P.
© GLOBALG.A.P.
PRESS RELEASE

 

A cross-category consumer label to make responsible farming visible

Cologne, Germany (27 April 2021) – GLOBALG.A.P. c/o FoodPLUS GmbH launched its consumerfacing initiative, the GGN label, during an online event on 27 April. International stakeholders from the agriculture and retail sectors were invited to the unveiling event during which GLOBALG.A.P. experts presented the new GGN label. GLOBALG.A.P. also announced that the new GGN label can now be applied to fruit and vegetables as well. Unlike the previous GGN labels, which were specific to aquaculture and floriculture products, the new GGN label is a universal, cross-category label.

The GGN Label – “All in One”

Since consumers have one shopping list and are looking for consistent orientation across different product categories, GLOBALG.A.P. c/o FoodPLUS GmbH has decided to move from two scopespecific labels to one uniform label for all categories. The new GGN label stands for certified, responsible farming and transparency. Available for both packed and loose fresh products, the new label is available to producers, retailers, traders, packers and restaurant chains starting April 2021. 

“Transparency is at the heart of the GGN label. We help consumers to discover the roots of their products while helping the businesses who practice and support responsible farming showcase this. Together we’re taking transparency to the next level”, says Kristian Moeller, Managing Director at GLOBALG.A.P. c/o FoodPLUS GmbH.

The 5th Anniversary of the GGN Label

GLOBALG.A.P. c/o FoodPLUS GmbH introduced its consumer-facing initiative, the GGN label, five years ago. It was first launched in 2016 for aquaculture products, followed by floriculture products in 2017. Now in 2021, fruit and vegetables are also included. All products with the GGN label come from a farm whose production process has been independently certified according to international GLOBALG.A.P. standards or one of the standards that is recognized by GLOBALG.A.P. as equivalent. These standards are holistic in nature and cover food safety, sustainability, environmental protection, animal welfare, workers’ health and safety, and supply chain transparency. All these aspects of responsible farming come together under the GGN label, which provides transparency through unique 13-digit identification numbers that are linked to supply chain actors with GLOBALG.A.P. certification.

These GLOBALG.A.P. Numbers correspond with profiles on the GGN label portal (www.ggn.org), allowing consumers to find the roots of their product. 576 farm profiles are already online. Click here to learn more about the GGN label.

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Barakat offers over 1,500 healthy items and sustainable goals in 2021

Barakat with more than 1,500 healthy references, sustainable goals in 2021

The world largest manufacturer of non-preserved fresh juices increases its sourcing programme from local growers, multiplies its healthy innovations and customises its product assortment.

It is that time of the year again when resolutions abound – like a fresh, healthy start! “Make good on this resolution with Barakat’s fresh juices, cut fruits, healthy shots, ice pops and more,” said managing director, Kenneth D’costa.

Barakat’s promise to its customers has been to serve the best of fresh, from the choicest fruits and veggies from across the globe to 100%-fresh juices with no additives or preservatives. Every Barakat product stands true to this commitment, which means customers can rest assured that their nutritional needs will always be served by this brand.

The need for immunity boosting is more pressing than ever before with the pandemic still enveloping the globe. Barakat’s 60ml healthy shots featuring super foods, like ginger, turmeric, moringa etc., give you a significant dose of immunity and are a perfect health-in-a bottle grab and go option.

“You are what you eat” best defines the link between food and wellness. Active lifestyles and potentially hazardous health conditions due to elevated stress levels are real time issues in today’s world. The requirement for a nutritionally balanced meal that can heal and treat from within is best delivered by fresh and healthy natural produce. “Eat your rainbow” essentially means that the more colour on your plate from various fruits and vegetables, the healthier you become. Nature provides nourishment in plenty and Barakat packages them in tasty and delectable forms like juices, crunchy salads and treats like ice pops which are nothing but frozen juices. There are also specialised ranges like the keto range to satisfy specific dietary requirements.

Barakat also believes in promoting the best of fresh from local sources by supporting 40-50 local growers. A wide variety of 40 types of fruits and vegetables spanning mushrooms, greens, tomato, peppers, and cucumbers are available from local farms in the UAE.

Eco-friendly initiatives & investments in hydroponics represent a key focus for the company over the next few years. Barakat is partnering with Tadweer, a strategic partner for waste management with the Dubai Municipality to turn peels into green compost, a multi-purpose conditioner for the soil. Barakat’s state-of-the-art facilities achieved zero-effluent status for the year 2020 and Barakat has taken the pledge to recycle the equivalent of 11,000 trees a year of cardboard used across its 6 state-of-the-art facilities and corporate offices.

Largest range of healthy line, customized solutions for Expo 2021

The firm’s core belief is to make its customers the “healthiest version of themselves”, by serving them in locations like health clubs, fitness centres and spas, as well as regular retail channels with health and wellness products that include Keto and juice shots amongst others. Barakat’s communication campaigns highlight the link between food and wellness while delivering the message of “Best of Fresh”. These philosophies will now be reflected in the events and activations that the brand participates in.

Exotics, organics, retail & e-commerce new business lines

Barakat is investing heavily in delivering to your doorstep while also strengthening its presence in traditional outlet channels. “We have launched an app and enhanced our e-commerce platform for an optimal customer experience bringing convenience and the ease of ordering together. We will continue to extend our range to include ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat meals, wellness juices, breakfast pots and natural chilled desserts,” said D’costa.

Consumer trends indicate the need for natural, fresh and clean products that offer convenience on customers’ doorsteps. “New product development at Barakat has always been guided with the basic philosophy of nothing but the best of fresh and natural for our consumers. We are also mindful of all our initiatives being sustainable and are constantly improving processes, making infrastructural changes to become a fully sustainable brand,” said D’costa.

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Sainsbury’s commits to £1 billion to become Net Zero by 2040

Sainsbury's commits to £1 billion to become Net Zero by 2040

UK retailer Sainsbury’s has issued a pledge that its operations will become Net Zero in line with the goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the highest ambition of the Paris Agreement, and a decade ahead of the UK Government’s own target. The project will focus on reducing carbon emissions, food waste, plastic packaging, water usage and increasing recycling, biodiversity and healthy and sustainable eating    Sainsbury’s will work collaboratively with suppliers and will ask suppliers for their own carbon reduction commitments. 

According to a press release issued by the retailer, its current carbon footprint is one million tons, which is a 35% absolute reduction in the last 15 years despite its space increasing by 46% over the same time frame. For the last six years Sainsbury’s has been awarded an A rating for taking action on Climate Change by the CDP, the highest rating of any UK supermarket.

Sainsbury’s will use the £1 billion investment to implement a programme of changes, with a focus on reducing carbon emissions, food waste, plastic packaging and water usage and increasing recycling, biodiversity and healthy and sustainable eating. The investment will enable the business to fulfil Scope one and Scope two emissions, putting the business on course for Net Zero a decade ahead of the UK government’s deadlines. 

The retailer will work with the Carbon Trust to assess emissions and set science-based targets for reduction, publicly reporting on progress every six months. The targets will align the business with the goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the highest ambition of the Paris Agreement. Sainsbury’s will work with suppliers to set their own ambitious Net Zero commitments, in line with the Paris Agreement goals.

Mike Coupe, now former CEO of Sainsbury’s, said: “Our commitment has always been to help customers live well for less, but we must recognise that living well now also means living sustainably.  We have a duty to the communities we serve to continue to reduce the impact our business has on the environment and we are committing to reduce our own carbon emissions and become Net Zero by 2040, ten years ahead of the government’s own targets, because 2050 isn’t soon enough. We have a strong heritage of reducing our carbon emissions – we have reduced them by 35% over the past fifteen years despite the footprint of our business increasing by over 40%. We invested £260 million in over 3,000 initiatives over the last decade, including the start of our LED lighting programme and refrigeration. Over the next 20 years we will invest a further £1 billion in programmes that will transform the way we do business and put environmental impact at the forefront of every decision we make.”

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Organic food sales surpass $100 billion

Organic food sales surpass $100 billion, Source: FiBL and AMI

With organic demand rising across the world, markets are changing as large-scale retailers push for greater market share and seek to outdo one another to establish their green credentials. 

The world appears to be decisively turning its back on practices that are unethical and damaging for the planet. This is evidenced by the worldwide boom in sales of organic food and drink, which surpassed the US$100 billion mark for the first time in 2018, with global revenue increasing by 6% to $105 billion, according to a report published by Ecovia Intelligence. The largest markets are North America and Europe, which account for a combined 90% of the world’s consumption of organics. While sales remain concentrated in the West, the share has declined from the 2005 level of 97%, with organic sales growing in China, India and Brazil. Denmark has the highest per capita consumption of organics in Europe, and this is reflected in the fact that organic products receive great prominence on the shelves of the country’s general retailers. In fact, 96% of all organic sales in the Scandinavian country occur in general retailers (source: FiBL and AMI). By contrast, less than half of organic sales in France take place in general retailers, with specialised retailers accounting for about 32% of total sales revenues, and direct marketing also contributing a significant amount (12.5%). The picture in Germany bears more resemblance to the French than the Danish scenario, with general retailers accounting for around 59% of organic sales and specialist stores contributing 27%.

 

Organic food sales surpass $100 billion, Source: FiBL and AMI

 

 

Biocoop, drives France’s commitment to change 

BIOCOOP Key figures

France’s Biocoop project promotes sustainable organic farming and fair trade. Founded by committed consumers, the Biocoop network strives to place ethics and cooperation at the centre of its activity and development. It consists of 3,600 farms, 425 employee shareholders, 3 consumer associations and 20 farmer cooperatives. The over 400 products sold in bulk at Biocoop stores are 100% organic, and 23% of them are certified fair trade. With the radical changes taking place within the organic market, Biocoop favours and incentivises suppliers who, according to the project’s strategy “can guarantee stable development with ecological transparency and coherency”. 

In 2018, Biocoop opened 70 new stores, taking its network to 600 outlets across the country and its turnover to €1.2 billion. Biocoop’s products are grown on over 3,600 farms that have signed up to the project along with 21 farmer cooperatives. Meanwhile, Biocoop has expanded the project to the foodservice channel, which is also fast expanding. Offering more than 900 specialist products to 5,200 customers in this sector, turnover in this segment was up 22% in 2018. 

The project is in constant and rapid expansion, with large-scale investments in the last year seeing the opening of new warehouses to serve the different regions of France. The 54 trucks of the Biocoop transport company (STB) collect from producers and supply partners and deliver to all the network’s stores. Biocoop has also invested in marketing, using TV and online campaigns to spread news of its good work.

 

 

REWE and Penny eliminate 7,000 tons of plastics

In Germany, the REWE retail group has been selling organic foods for over 20 years, highlighting that the retailer doesn’t see it as just a passing trend. The retailer’s fruit and vegetable section alone contains around 50 types of organically grown produce and is helping to drive the further development of and transition to organic agriculture. REWE’s guidelines state that the firm monitors how its products are produced, as well as immediately upon arrival at its stores, commissions accredited inspection bodies to conduct product analyses in accordance with its own exacting standards. 

“Packaging altered for over 1,000 references”

Now, the REWE Group has published guidelines for environmentally friendlier packaging and has already eliminated 7,000 tons of plastic per year from its REWE and Penny stores. This has so far involved altering how over 1,000 references are packaged and discontinued the use of plastic bags in all of its stores in 2016. Using a product-specific analysis, REWE identified packaging groups for relevant plastic savings and further optimisation to avoid, reduce and improve packaging materials with regard to environmental friendliness, with the criteria binding for all suppliers. In the case of fruit and vegetables, this has involved natural branding, such as laser logos, or the use of grass paper.

 

Organic heroes to appeal to children

Meanwhile, to promote consumption of organic fresh produce, Penny has introduced a new concept targeting children: the Naturgut organic heroes. The idea behind these heroes organic heroes is to educate people that appearance does not equal taste; so even when fruit and vegetables do not visually comply with the norm, they can have excellent taste, quality and durability. According to a company press release: “Because no synthetic and chemical fertilisers are used in the cultivation of organic heroes, it is only natural that they have little quirks every now and then. This is exactly what makes them our Naturgut organic heroes, which can be found on the shelves at PENNY stores.

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Edeka to stock citrus with Apeel technology

Edeka to stock citrus with Apeel technology, credit. yisris, Flickr
Source: Flickr

 

The Edeka Group is extending its commitment to fighting food waste by using the innovative “Apeel” technology not just to protect its avocados but also oranges and clementines. Apeel produce has a protective layer consisting of plant-based materials that slow down water loss and penetration by oxygen – two main factors contributing to decay of fresh fruit and vegetable products.

Apeel reduces food waste and makes plastic foil unnecessary for packaging many products. Edeka is the trading partner of US-based Apeel Sciences and launched avocados with Apeel’s protective coating at selected stores at the end of 2019.

Oranges and clementines are now following suit as part of the pilot project. In the future, Apeel’s plant-derived protective coating will also ensure longer-lasting freshness of Edeka WWF oranges (1.5 kg bag), Edeka Selection oranges “NavelGold” (1 kg bag), and EDEKA Selection “ClemenGold” clementines (750 g bag).

The Apeel-protected oranges, clementines and avocados will be available in selected Edeka stores in parts of northern Germany and North-Rhine Westphalia, as well as at Netto branches in parts in Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and Lower Saxony. The project foresees nationwide roll-out of these longer shelf-life products in Germany during 2020.

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Chile puts people at the heart of sustainability policy

Chile puts people at the heart of sustainability policy, Ronald Bown, president of ASOEX
Ronald Bown, president of ASOEX

 

“Sustainability has to be based on a long-term vision and the commitment has to be institutional, which is why our association has defined it as a policy,” said Ronald Bown, president of ASOEX. “This means strengthening at all levels, internally and externally, everything that has to do with food safety and security, but always putting people at the centre, especially consumers and workers.” The concept of sustainability that guides the actions of the Chilean agricultural sector is a commitment to society, the environment and the economic viability of businesses, with special emphasis on the people involved in the process to ensure that workers perform their functions without harming others and consumers benefit from a product that is reliable and has complied with internal regulations, especially those relating to the workplace. “For us, social sustainability has three key sides: the consumer (linked to safety), workers, and the community,” said Bown.

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Sustainable breakthrough for protecting vegetable crops

Sustainable breakthrough for protecting vegetable crops, credit. Alexandra Sautois, Eurofresh Distribution
© Alexandra Sautois, Eurofresh Distribution

 

A ground-breaking study aimed at crop pest control has revealed for the first time that diamondback moths can be genetically engineered to produce only male offspring and survive in the wild. Caterpillars of the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella, are among farmers’ greatest enemies as they feast on cabbages, broccoli and cauliflowers. However, the positive results of this open-field study conducted by UK company Oxitec and published in Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology pave the way for a sustainable alternative to chemical pesticides. By ensuring that only male offspring are produced, the population of the pests is controlled and, importantly, that this strain is lost from the population over time as a self-limiting mechanism. According to the study results, the engineered males dispersed at a similar rate in the field to their wild-type counterparts.

The company has carried out several field trials of its first-generation modified mosquito strains in Brazil, Panama and the Cayman Islands. However, the non-profit organization GeneWatch UK wrote in a 2018 report that it was not convinced of the efficacy of Oxitec’s technology. However, Oxitec responded by saying: “It ignores the body of strong science, detailed in more than 100 peer-reviewed publications carried out by scientists and scientific institutions from around the world, upon which our public health and crop protection solutions are built. As such, it has no place in reasoned scientific discourse as it was created to drum up negative, sensationalist headlines.”

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Ecuador to launch ‘Premium and Sustainable’ brand at Fruit Logistica 2020

Ecuador to launch ‘Premium and Sustainable’ brand at Fruit Logistica 2020
Launching event in Ecuador.

The trade show’s Partner Country will bring its largest and most diverse delegation yet, featuring senior government dignitaries and 38 produce grower-exporters across a 600m2 pavilion.

Ecuador’s Minister of Agriculture, Mr Xavier Lazo, will launch the ‘Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable’ fresh produce brand at Fruit Logistica 2020, during the Latin American country’s biggest-ever participation at the world’s largest fresh fruit and vegetable trade fair, on 5-7 February 2020 in Berlin, Germany.

The brand, which will accompany Ecuador’s highest quality produce exports to Europe, is based on five pillars within the country’s agricultural vision:

  1. New Cooperativism: A new form of association to help progress the agricultural sector;
  2. Rural Women Empowerment and Rural Young Entrepreneur: Empowering women in family agriculture, as well as fostering the rural youth to use their creativity and innovation to solve problems and improve production in the agricultural sector;
  3. Zero Deforestation: Implementing deforestation-free practices in the agricultural sector;
  4. Productivity, Quality and Traceability: Showing the story behind each product; in other words, when and where the product was produced, and by whom; and
  5. Zero Rural Poverty: This is the main goal; to achieve progress in rural areas in order to put a stop to poverty; assuring an Ecuador with success, hope and progress – an Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable.

Ecuadorian produce supplied under the Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable banner will enter the most demanding consumer markets distinguished by its social and environmental sustainability and its premium quality. The logo is inspired by the ‘Chakana’, or Southern Cross, and serves to illustrate the five pillars of Ecuador’s agricultural sector; reflecting the country’s agricultural vision for the next 10 years.

Minister Lazo will present the marque at Fruit Logistica during a press conference on Wednesday 5 February at 11.30am in the Press Center, Hall 6.3, Room B, to demonstrate the real action undertaken across Ecuador to modernize fruit production processes, strengthen quality controls and raise sustainability efforts, particularly within the banana sector.

In celebration of being named the official Fruit Logistica Partner Country for 2020, Ecuador is bringing to Berlin its biggest-ever delegation, including the Vice-President of Ecuador, Mr Otto Sonnenholzner; Ecuador’s Minister of Production, International Trade, Investment and Fishery, Mr Ivan Ontaneda; and Ecuador’s Environment Minister, Mr Raúl Ledesma.

Also present for Ecuador’s 18th appearance at the international produce exhibition will be trade organisations PRO ECUADOR, CORPEI (Ecuadorian Corporation of Exports Promotion and Investments) the Ecuadorian banana cluster (formed by banana associations AEBE, Acorbanec and Agroban), Ecuador’s National Institute of Agricultural Research (INIAP) and Ecuador’s Phytosanitary and Animal Health Control and Regulation Agency (Agrocalidad).

Across the three-day show, suppliers will seek to establish new contacts in both the wholesale and retail channels, and especially with importers seeking high quality and sustainable produce. As a result of Fruit Logistica 2020, Ecuador estimates it will generate sales of more than US$21.8 million.

In recognition of Ecuador’s status as the largest banana exporter in the world, half of Ecuador’s overall delegation will comprise suppliers of bananas, baby bananas, red bananas and plantain. Furthermore, as Ecuador’s continues to diversify its commercial fruit export offer, a greater number of suppliers will showcase produce including: pineapples, mangoes, Hass avocados, dragon fruit, physalis, papayas and pepino melon, among others. All products to be presented are grown under the Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable banner.

Following the ‘Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable’ press conference on Wednesday 5 February, PRO ECUADOR will launch its ‘Exquisite Ecuador’ website, which showcases Ecuadorian gastronomy using exotic fruits. PRO ECUADOR’s Vice-Minister Veronica Chávez and Ecuadorian Chef Carlos Gallardo will make the announcement at the PRO ECUADOR stand in Hall 23, E-08, at 12.10pm. A drinks and canapé reception will follow, allowing attendees the opportunity to try Ecuadorian cuisine.

For more information in English or Spanish about the ‘Ecuador: Premium And Sustainable’ brand, visit: www.balcon.mag.gob.ec/ecuadorfruitlogistic/

ABOUT PRO ECUADOR

PRO ECUADOR is the promotional arm for exports and investment of Ecuador’s Vice-Ministry for Export and Investment Promotion, and Ecuador’s Ministry for Production, International Trade, Investment and Fishery. PRO ECUADOR operates a network of trade offices worldwide. www.proecuador.gob.ec

Source: Press release
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Two Major Innovations for Ecofriendly Exotic Fruit and Vegetable Packaging

Exotic fruit and vegetable printed

Action on plastic pollution: an environmental emergency

According to an Ellen MacArthur Foundation study, “the ocean is expected to contain 1 tonne of plastic for every 3 tonnes of fish by 2025, and by 2050, more plastics than fish (by weight).” In response to that environmental emergency, the Environment and Community Ministry launched France’s National Plastics Pact on 21 February 2019.

 

Target: 60% reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging in 2022 and 100% in 2025.

 

In the exotic fruit and vegetable sector, plastic packaging is a pressing issue that raises the challenge of developing eco-friendly solutions from the packaging to the labelling whilst maintaining the quality and traceability of fresh produce.

The company CAPEXPO is now making its contribution with two major innovations in exotic fruit and vegetable packaging and labelling, beating the official target by two years!

 

INNOVATION #1 

EXOTIC FRUIT AND VEGETABLE PRINTING

The patented process, which CAPEXO owns for France, makes it possible to print food-grade ink on the skin of almost all fruit and vegetables, adding a barcode, price or any other consumer information. The innovation heralds the end of excess plastic packaging and stickers for exotic fruit and vegetables and more. 

All exotic fruit and vegetables with a relatively smooth skin can be printed. Pineapple, for example, cannot. Grainy-skinned avocado can, but a barcode would not be legible enough to work properly at the checkout. It is possible to print the sale price, however. The printing process also adapts to the fruit’s ripeness to avoid any possible damage. 

Exotic fruit and vegetable printed

Food safety guaranteed 

The process involves patented, quality-tested food-grade inks — the same ones used in the pharmaceutical industry to coat tablets. 

End of checkout shrinkage

In store, on-fruit printing avoids the problem of differentiating between, for example, an air-freighted and seaborne mango, which have different sale prices, at the supermarket checkout. The process removes all possible confusion as either the barcode or price is shown on each individual fruit.

INNOVATION #2

BIOCOMPOSTABLE PUNNET PACKAGING 

Ready to eat fruit sold in batches, such as ripe avocadoes or air-freighted bananas, needs punnet packaging to protect it and prevent checkout shrinkage. To replace the plastic film and punnet, which are at best recyclable, CAPEXO biocompostable packaging features cardboard sourced from sustainably managed birchwood forests, wrapped in a protective transparent film, which is also derived from birchwood, and heat-sealed on a flow-pack machine. That makes the punnet packaging fully biocompostable. Corn starch-based biocompostable films are already available. As they may not be 100% GMO-free, however, CAPEXO rejected that option as a precautionary measure. 

Home composting 

End consumers can throw the punnet and film away in their home compost bin, where they will naturally degrade in the same way as other compostable waste. Failing which, the packaging can be disposed of in a recycling bin.

Punnet traceability maintained 

CAPEXO biocompostable packaging enables ecofriendly product traceability with a batch number, origin, best-before date and all other information required by consumers using foodgrade ink.

Exotic fruit and vegetable printed

About CAPEXPO

Founded in 1996, the company CAPEXO imports and markets exotic fruit and vegetables in France under the Lilot Fruits brand. A key player at Rungis International Market, CAPEXO provides a constant supply of delicious and nutritious produce to wholesalers and the wholesale markets as well as specialist (Grand Frais, Métro, etc.) and generalist (Carrefour, Casino, Monoprix, etc.) food retailers. 
Sharing the same high standards as its suppliers, CAPEXO selects produce from the finest sources. The company works closely with one of Reunion’s biggest cooperatives. 90% of the island’s air-freighted fruit is exported by Lilot Fruits. 
Victoria pineapple, avocado, mango, passionfruit, lime, etc. are just some of CAPEXO’s flagship products.

Source: Press release
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Dino Polska goes green by harnessing the sun’s power

Dino Polska goes green by harnessing the sun’s power, ct. The Star
Credit: The Star

 

 

Polish supermarket chain Dino Polska S.A. is to install solar panels to generate renewable energy at its new and existing stores, according to European Supermarket News. By early 2021, the retailer aims to mount photovoltaic panels on the roofs of almost 400 Dino stores throughout Poland. The total capacity of the photovoltaic panels is expected to generate an estimated 14 GWh of clean, solar electricity per year and reduce CO2 emissions by around 11,000 tons per year. Chief executive of Dino Polska S.A, Szymon Piduch, said, “Our intention is to meet the expectations of our customers. This applies not only to the development of Dino’s product offering, based on high-quality fresh products, but also to rising to global challenges and executing projects aimed at combating climate change.”