Cooperation in the food chain

During the past year, Cerealia and Menigo have developed a partnership around sustainable production and sustainable product choices. With common aims and the help of education, this will create a platform that can enable our sustainability work to be very successful.

Menigo and Lantmännen share a common aim to reduce climate impact and boost sustainability in the Swedish food chain. This very largely concerns offering sustainable products and convincing customers to make sustainable choices. By working together, we seek to create the platform to achieve tough targets and ensure that everyone in the chain plays their part.

For Menigo, sustainability is something that permeates our entire business and that plays a key part of our profiling towards customers and stakeholders. Over the last year, we have sought to further develop our partnership with Lantmännen and Farming of the Future and intend to continue to do so. A very large proportion of the environment impact of food comes from primary production, which makes the choice of raw materials and products important. This was a real eye opener for us. From this perspective Menigo’s partnership with Lantmännen, who can influence production, is absolutely vital if we are to be able to offer more sustainable choices. Lantmännen is implementing concrete measures in its production chain that show the way towards this goal, and we at Menigo are the important link to customers.

From Lantmännen’s perspective, the partnership with Menigo is an important way to reach all the way to end customers. Our sustainability agenda is key to everything we do at Lantmännen and finding new and better ways of packaging our work towards customers and consumers, stirring interest and creating value for them is always a focus for us. It is about both developing products that contribute to increased sustainability and make it easier for customers to choose, and educating people in how we can become the world’s most sustainable agriculture and what each respective link in the chain must do on our journey to get there. Menigo can help us in reaching out with our messages to customers in terms of both breadth and depth, and in so doing, jointly contribute to increased sustainability. This creates a Win/Win for both of us.

Customers are setting an ever-greater value on sustainability, at a time of complexity and lack of knowledge. We can see that Menigo customers often have ambitious targets and a desire to make the right choice, but it is not always clear to them how they should achieve this. The agenda is being increasingly expanded from organic to broader sustainability issues. People often have the idea that small scale and local is best today, but if we are to achieve major changes, there must be a shift to a broader perspective, to all farming production, and making sustainable choices should be clear and simple. Conflicts of interest can also arise between budget constraints and sustainability aims. We can help our customers to sort and prioritise here.

Cooperation is a must if big changes are to be achieved, and with our joint forces, we can contribute to creating a larger movement. We are still at the start of this journey, to date we have invested in education and creating more contact interfaces between our respective organisations. This helps towards a broad understanding of the issues and building a base for long-term development. Many people work with products before they reach the school kitchen or restaurant, and who now have a better understanding and knowledge of sustainability issues to support them and to communicate this to the next link in the chain. Cooperation is based on a common aim and mutual openness and transparency.

We are now casting our eyes forward and have developed a plan for 2021. Areas we are working on include packaging our message to customers even more clearly, and also contributing to more in-depth knowledge and more cooperation within the food sector in a broad sense. We are striving to reduce our use of fossil resources, develop technology that improves sustainability performance and to develop ever more sustainably produced food and packaging. As one example, Lantmännen is developing its range with various products based on grain grown in line with the Climate & Nature programme that takes a long-term approach to developing sustainable farming methods with reduced climate impact and respect for biodiversity. New criteria are added to the cultivation programme as and when, to continuously improve the programme results. One big initiative for 2021, is switching our oat meal and pancake range to Climate & Nature. By offering grain produced in line with the Climate & Nature programme, we make it easier for our customers to be a part of and contribute to the Farming of the Future.

We are also continuing to driving our range of Swedish pasta made with Swedish grown durum wheat and our Swedish grown beans. All with the aim of making it easier for our customers to make sustainable choices. Promoting Swedish production is about supporting Swedish farmers, Swedish agriculture and strengthening the Swedish food supply, which also contributes to environment sustainability where our Swedish agriculture is leading the way. Within Foodservice, Lantmännen has raised the issue of origin over the past year, and our partnership with Menigo has contributed to our being able to put the issue of origin even more firmly on the agenda.

One natural perspective in sustainability issues is long-term thinking. We can make a big difference in the future via initiatives and investments. Both Lantmännen’s and Menigo’s climate goals stretch to 2050, when our businesses should have become climate neutral. We envisage a future where awareness and knowledge of sustainability issues have come so far that integrating sustainability in decision-making parameters throughout the entire food chain goes without saying. And that it will be easier and easier to implement changes that are necessary. The generation that is growing up now will set high demands and view the sustainability agenda as self-evident, and we want to show that a great deal is already being done and that together, we, via our daily choices, can make a sustainable future possible.

Promoting Swedish production is about supporting Swedish farmers, Swedish agriculture and strengthening the Swedish food supply, which also contributes to environmental sustainability where our Swedish agriculture is leading the way.

Susanna Liljeblad Sales Director Food Service, Lantmännen Cerealia
Marie Malmqvist Chef Kategori & Inköp Broadline, Lantmännen Cerealia