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Fighting food waste on all fronts

We are committed to cutting our food waste by half by 2030, in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
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Fighting Food Waste

The target we have to achieve by 2030, in line with goal 12.3 of the Sustainable Development Goals, is to cut by half the food waste we generate. We want to do this, for example, through efficient management of foodstuffs, by making use of ugly fruit and vegetables and by donating surpluses. We were the first Portuguese retailer to disclose its food waste footprint, one of the innovatory steps we have taken in this area.

An integrated response

Around one third of all food produced in the world is wasted. This means that, every year, more than 1.3 billion tonnes of food are not used. At the same time, the FAO (United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation) estimates that more than 820 million people starve or suffer malnutrition.

As a food retailer, we know that providing the quality fresh produce that our customers deserve means taking extra care – these products are more sensitive to temperature, best-by-dates and the way they are handled and transported. That is why the strategy for addressing this problem involves everyone along the value chain, from the farmers, fishermen and industries that sell us food products, through to the consumers and the communities served by our stores.

Integrating ugly vegetables

We buy uncalibrated fruit and vegetables which, instead of being discarded in the fields, are integrated into the value chain, because their nutritional value is the same as that of the produce we sell in our stores. These “ugly” vegetables are used, for example, in the soups we make in Portugal and Poland or are processed into convenience foods, such as ready-to-use prepared vegetables. “Ugly” fruit is also sold at discount prices at our Recheio stores and, additionally, Jerónimo Martins Agro-Alimentar incorporates these fruits and vegetables into cattle feed.

more than 76,000 tonnes
`` Ugly `` fruit and vegetables integrated (2015-2019)

Engaging consumers

Since 2019 at Pingo Doce, and starting in 2020 at Biedronka, we have developed markdown sales of foodstuffs close to their best-by date, in order to encourage consumers to buy them at discount before they become waste. Another commitment on which we are working is to make it easier to manage the validity dates for food products, so that consumers can quickly understand both the expiration date and the consumption term after opening.

In the case of Pingo Doce and Recheio private brands, packaging and portion sizes are being adjusted to what people actually consume, in order to reduce wastage. In Portugal, Pingo Doce has launched a book “Zero Waste at the Table”, encouraging consumers to reuse leftovers and to improve how they store and conserve food and interpret best-by dates. The magazine “Sabe Bem”, available at Pingo Doce stores, provides tips and recipes which are then shared over social media, such as on Facebook or Instagram.

9,500 tonnes
Estimated quantity of markdown sales

Food donations

Surpluses that comply with safety standards but which can no longer be sold (for instance, because they are approaching their sell-by date) are donated to charities in Portugal, Poland and Colombia. We give priority to organisations that work with the elderly, children and underprivileged young people. Biedronka’s food donations programme got under way in 2016 and has exceeded initial expectations, with half the stores in the network getting involved in the project a year earlier than anticipated at launch. In Portugal, food is donated through the Pingo Doce and Recheio chains, whilst in Colombia the project started as soon as Ara was launched, in 2013.

353,000
People benefiting from Biedronka food donations in 2019
57,900 tonnes
Food donated in all countries (2015-2019)

MATERIALS AND PACKAGING

We seek to optimize the use of resources by developing reusable and/or recyclable solutions.

SUSTAINABLE FISHING

We have designed a sustainable fishing strategy to reduce our impact on ecosystems.

ANIMAL WELFARE

We feed our animals quality food and endeavour to improve animal welfare.