Apetit reduces its environmental impacts by investment in a bioenergy plant

One of the objectives of Apetit’s corporate responsibility programme is to reduce the Group’s carbon dioxide emissions* per production tonne by half by the end of 2022, using the current level as the baseline. This target will be achieved with the help of the bioenergy plant to be built at the Kantvik vegetable oil milling plant. Oil milling is the Group’s most energy-intensive process. The bioenergy plant will replace the current energy solution based on non-renewable fuels, which means it will have a significant impact on CO2 emissions. The bioenergy plant will also make the production facility more self-sufficient with regard to energy. In addition to reducing CO2 emissions, the bioenergy plant creates the opportunity to make more efficient use of production side streams in energy production. The bioenergy plant can be used to burn byproducts such as the straw waste included in seed deliveries and waste from screening processes. In the future, the steam energy required by the plant will be produced by the bioenergy plant. The plant is scheduled to be completed in the end of 2020. The size of the investment is EUR 5.2 million.   *The calculation of Apetit’s climate impacts is based on the energy consumption of the company’s production plants and the way the energy is generated.

Räpi Experimental farm is part of Carbon Action project

Apetit’s Räpi experimental farm, located in the Satakunta region, joined the Carbon Action project along with more than a hundred other Finnish farms. Carbon Action promotes the wider adoption of climate-friendly farming practices, helps farmers implement farming practices that sequester carbon and improve soil fertility, and conducts scientific research to verify soil carbon storage. Carbon Action is a joint project by the Finnish Meteorological Institute and Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG) and it combines top-level research with work in the field by farmers. Apetit is offering the use of the Räpi experimental farm for the project for a period of five years to promote research, development and practices associated with carbon farming. Apetit has made a Baltic Sea commitment for 2019-2025 Apetit made a Baltic Sea commitment for BSAG for the period 2019-2025. The core purpose of Apetit’s commitment is to generate data that can be used in contract growing especially in improving soil fertility and related to carbon sequestration. The objective is to promote, through Apetit’s contract growers, a sustainable food chain and to commercialise carbon farming methods that help sequester carbon. The commitment has two parts: Apetit will include the best growing practices proven by the carbon pilot in its contract farmers’ farming guidelines and provide training to all of its contract farmers on farming methods that improve soil fertility and carbon sequestration. Apetit will also include the Räpi experimental farm in the research project to promote measures that advance carbon farming. Under the commitment, Apetit will also join the company network of the Carbon Action platform which enables the various parties in the food chain to collaborate and to develop their own operations with regard to carbon farming.

Safety at work is developed by means of proactive operating model

Safety at work plays a significant role at Apetit and is one of the key themes of its personnel strategy. The goal is to reduce occupational accidents to zero and to reduce sickness absences. Safety at work training is organised at all Apetit Group operating locations. In 2019, some 280 Apetit employees took part in safety at work training. In addition to on-site safety training and occupational health and safety days organised at the production plants, topics related to safety at work are regularly covered in Apetit’s online learning environment. The training activities have led to a substantial increase in the number of safety observations, for example. Key measures to develop safety at work include increasing communication about occupational safety, in addition to more systematic safety observation practices and the further development and harmonisation of location-specific occupational health and safety committees. In order to prevent occupational accidents, Apetit regularly updates occupational safety guidelines. In addition, we have improved our know-how in risk evaluation and incident investigation and systematically conducted risk assessments regarding production tasks. In 2019, Apetit continued to offer a reward for days without any incidents at each location.

Packaging protects the product

The main purpose of food packaging is to protect the product. Good packaging makes processing easier in the distribution chain, keeps the product fresh, ensures product safety and protects the product, thus preventing food waste. Good packaging also tells the consumer about the product’s content and properties. Plastic is used for food packaging because it is such a versatile material. It is light and durable, which is good for logistics, and it provides excellent protection for many types of products. Around 20 per cent of the packaging material used by Apetit is currently plastic. Roughly half of this material can be reused if it is recycled. For instance, the Apetit Tuorekset containers are recyclable plastic. 70 per cent of their raw material is recycled. Apetit continually improves its packaging to eco-friendlier. Apetit has the following goals for packaging materials made from plastic: to use recyclable packaging materials where possible to increase use of packaging materials made from renewable raw materials where possible to reduce the amount of packaging materials used by making them thinner where possible   New handy bag-in-box packaging for rapeseed oil Apetit has launched a new, handy and easy-to-use bag-in-box rapeseed oil packaging of for professional kitchens. Thanks to a tap, the packaging is easy to use unlike heavy dispensers. The tap also prevents spillage. The packaging is also hygienic and protects the oil from sunlight and oxidation. Its environmentally-friendly corrugated cardboard box is made of 100 per cent recyclable raw material. When empty, the cardboard packaging can be recycled and the bag can be used as energy waste. Compared to conventional plastic dispensers the manufacturing of the bags requires almost 80 per cent lower amount of plastic.

Apetit is a partner of the yrityskylä learning environment for young people...

Apetit will continue as an Yrityskylä partner over the period 2018- 2021. Apetit has been involved in the Yrityskylä project since 2015. Yrityskylä offers school students an opportunity to learn about how companies and the society works by working in miniature companies. The job descriptions of the employees in Apetit’s miniature company are like a scale-model of the real Apetit. The students negotiate with other miniature companies in Yrityskylä on contract growing and make Responsible Growing contracts, engage in product development and design new products, plan marketing and organise tastings to collect customer experiences and sell products to customers.

Apetit made seven nutritional commitments to promote a more sustainable die...

All Apetit products are based on its R&D strategy to develop healthy and easy-to-use products that help people to increase their use of vegetables. Apetit develops its products in line with general nutritional recommendations, and the company monitors and makes use of reliable studies and nutritional information published by research institutes in its field. Apetit has made a nutrition commitment in seven content areas determined by the Finnish Food Safety Authority. The purpose of the commitment is to improve the nutritional quality of Finnish diets and support sustainable food choices. In addition to increasing the consumption of vegetables, the commitments promote to make Finnish diets healthier by reducing the consumption of salt and sugar and increasing the supply of healthy snacks. The commitment also improves the quality of the fats consumed by Finns. Vegetable-based oils are an integral part of a healthy diet, as they contain soft and unsaturated fats. Rapeseed oil contains omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. In accordance with the nutritional commitments it has made, Apetit has set a goal to increase the use of vegetables, to reduce the intake of salt and sugar and to promote the use of soft fats. To achieve to goals Apetit introduces new main course and snack products to the market and developes recipes. Apetit has also committed to increase the number of products based on fish-stock management. Commitments on development of product selection by 2020. Reference level is the situation in 2017. All of the targets set in the commitments were met during the two-year commitment period. NUTRITION COMMITMENTS Outcome Commitment for  2020 Increasing the use of vegetables     New products for the fresh product sections of retail stores +6 pcs +5 pcs Vegetable-based main course products +16 pcs +10 pcs Solutions that make it easier to increase the use of vegetables +150% +50% Lunch and meals     Offering of snack products in line with nutrition recommendations for schools +200% +100% Training and recipes for the professional food service sector +300% +50% Recipes     Recipes for consumers and the professional food service sector to increase the use of vegetables +251pcs +100 pcs Sugar intake     New products containing no added sugar for categories with a limited supply of such products +200% +100 pcs Quality of fat     Heart Symbol products for the retail trade and the professional food service sector to reduce the use of saturated fats +4 pcs +4 pcs Collections of recipes to support the use of rapeseed oil +38 pcs +20 pcs Salt intake     Heart Symbol products +40% +20% Products for children     New vegetable-based snack products +7 pcs +3 pcs Commitment: Sustainable food choices     Fish products based on fish-stock management +66% +30%

A safe working environment

Safety at work plays a significant role at Apetit and is one of the key themes of its personnel strategy. The goal is to reduce occupational accidents to zero and to reduce sickness absences. Key measures include increasing communication about occupational safety, in addition to more systematic safety observation practices and the further development and harmonisation of location-specific occupational health and safety committees. In order to prevent occupational accidents, Apetit regularly updates occupational safety guidelines. In addition, we have improved our know-how in risk evaluation and incident investigation and systematically conducted risk assessments regarding production tasks. We have also given supervisors training on occupational safety management in an extensive training programme that lasted for a year and covered 20 topics. Maintenance staff has been provided with training in machine safety. In 2018, Apetit started to offer a reward for days without any incidents at each location. Key indicators of occupational safety – the accident frequency rate and the number of safety observations, occupational accidents and sickness absences – are monitored on a monthly basis. Apetit has a slightly better level of accidents compared with the average for the food industry. Production work involves repetitive movements that may cause musculoskeletal disorders. In addition, cold-storage facilities and humid production facilities, as well as the use of machines and knives, increase the risk of illnesses and accidents. Apetit seeks to reduce this risk primarily through job-specific instructions and appropriate personal protective equipment and by improving machine safety and ensuring appropriate work clothing for the circumstances.

Reducing food waste has a substantial positive environmental impact

Food waste – that is, food or raw materials ending up as waste – is an ecological and economic problem. The annual food waste of the Finnish food chain as a whole is estimated to be 400 to 500 million kg. Food causes around one-third of the environmental impact generated by households. Reducing food waste is an important way to decrease the environmental impact of the food product chain. The environmental impact of food waste is markedly more significant than that of packaging production and waste management, for example. Freezing large amounts at a time and carefully maintaining the cold chain also make the food product chain more efficient and reduce waste. Reducing waste in production is a part of Apetit’s focus on continuous improvement of efficiency. Careful planning of production and development of sales forecasts play an important role in reducing waste. Apetit co-operates with WeFood to cut down its food waste Apetit and the WeFood shop for food waste run by Finn Church Aid are now working together and Apetit supplies fresh products that would otherwise become waste to WeFood. The Apetit products supplied to WeFood include various vegetable and salad mixes near their best before date or with errors on their packaging or that do not meet all quality criteria. The proceeds of WeFood are used for Finn Church Aid’s development aid. Apetit also finds new possibilities to reduce food waste with other food industry actors in Urban Food project, which aims to get surplus raw materials from food industry to the dining tables. Apetit also cooperates in Yhteinen Pöytä to reduce food waste.