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We Prefer Local

We favour long-lasting relations with local suppliers so that we can ensure maximum freshness, while simultaneously boosting production, encouraging the creation of local jobs and reducing our carbon footprint.
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Partnerships: Local Suppliers and Innovation

At the Jerónimo Martins Group, we select local suppliers whenever we can to boost the social and economic sustainability of the communities where we do business and minimise the carbon footprint of our products.

That’s why we only import products in the following situations:

  • When products are scarce, due to production seasonality, a common occurrence in the Fruit and Vegetables categories;
  • When there is no domestic production whatsoever or, if there is, the quantity produced in the country is insufficient to guarantee a sustained supply to our stores;
  • When the price-quality ratio of national products prevents us from meeting our commitment to supply consumers with quality at the best price.

We are committed to guaranteeing that 80% of the Jerónimo Martins Group’s food product purchases are sourced from local suppliers.

Products sourced from local suppliers in 2019

Portugal
83%
Poland
93%
Colombia
+95%

How we promote local production

We use specific signs to publicise the origin of some of our local products.

Such is the case of stickers with the colours of the national flag on Perishables, such as Fruit and Vegetables, and of additional information on Private Brand products.

Examples are the stickers “100% Nacional” (100% National) in Portugal, “Polski Produkt” (Polish Product) in Poland, and “Hecho en Colombia” (Made in Colombia), in Colombia.

Partnerships and innovation in the offer of local products

We seek to introduce innovative local products in our offer. These initiatives give consumers access to a varied assortment, while at the same time boosting partnerships with our suppliers and stimulating the development of their skills.

 

PORTUGAL 

Through Pingo Doce, we continued the extraordinary measure to support Portuguese producers under a protocol established with CAP (Confederation of Portuguese Farmers) – which was renewed for another three years in 2019 – by shortening the payment time to an average of 10 days to 370 suppliers in the categories of Fruit, Vegetables, Meat, Fish, Cold Meats and Wine.

In 2019, strawberries from the West of Portugal, apples from the Beiras region, cherries and other small fruits, such as blueberries and raspberries, featured in several in-store communication campaigns and in leaflets with the “National Product” seal. More than 1,900 tonnes of these products were sold.

Recheio maintained its partnerships with local suppliers, having launched seven new exclusive wine references from the Alentejo and Setúbal Peninsula regions. In total, more than 92,600 litres of these regional wines were sold. Recheio also launched a new extra virgin olive oil reference produced in the Alentejo region.

 

POLAND

Through regular visits to production sites and the sharing of technical knowledge with suppliers, Biedronka introduced new native varieties in the Fruit and Vegetables category: Śliwka Węgierka plums, lnka and Harnaś peaches, and regional Lubelskie and Łąckie apples with a protected geographical indication, available in more than 1,100 stores. Nearly 740 tonnes of these varieties have been sold in 2019.

Since 2016 we have been selling every two weeks and in more than 500 Biedronka stores, beef (veal) whose life cycle is controlled together with the supplier, in a “field to fork” approach.

COLOMBIA

Since the start of our operations in 2013, Ara has been working to establish stable relationships and partnerships with Colombian suppliers, not only through the acquisition of Private Brand products, but also through an event that brings together all the parties: the Private Brand Congress, which in 2019, had 220 current and potential suppliers.

Ara also signed an agreement with the “Banco Agrario da Colombia” (Agricultural Bank of Colombia) to offer better credit rates to its agricultural product suppliers.

Supplier Awareness and Training

We seek to raise awareness and train our business partners through programmes and actions dedicated to issues related to food quality and safety and sustainable development, deepening the relationship especially in areas where it is possible to improve cooperation and the development of innovative products.

Since 2014 we have been working with our Fruit and Vegetable suppliers in Portugal with the aim of promoting good agricultural practices, having developed the Sustainable Agriculture Manual. Learn more here.

In addition to the nine training sessions and meetings focused on Food Quality and Safety issues involving more than 150 suppliers, held in 2019, Ara’s Private Label supplier development programme – called “Ubuntu” – stands out. The aim is to improve the quality levels and production capacity of these partners, in a long-term relationship and commitment link with local communities in Colombia.

Independent Verification

Information on the proportion of costs with local suppliers was confirmed by an external and independent entity for the Group’s 2019 Annual Report.