Responsible and Sustainable Sourcing - Greenyard Sustainability Report -

Responsible and sustainable sourcing


Food supply chains have become more complex and longer as the physical distance from field to fork has increased. We explicitly acknowledge our responsibility for our supply chains and the social and environmental issues that may arise from them. Greenyard actively focuses on social standards, responsibility, transparency and traceability, in close collaboration with growers and suppliers.

Our approach
Greenyard sources more than 2.5 million tonnes of fruit and vegetables worldwide each year. 22% of our volumes originated from risk countries and regions (Amfori BSCI classification), driven largely by overseas volumes from the Fresh division. We attach great importance to ensuring social standards throughout our entire value chain. We have established the explicit ambition to only conduct business with suppliers who can vouch for their compliance with international and national employment legislation, particularly in risk regions. We ask our suppliers to assure social compliance using assessment tools and certification schemes (GRASP, SEDEX, Rainforest Alliance, ETI, SA8000).

Our progress
Greenyard has committed to having 100% of its grower base in risk regions certified for social compliance. At present, about 81% of our grower base in these regions is certified. Fair Trade volumes have also grown steadily and represent about 4% of Greenyard Fresh volumes. Elsewhere, volumes of organic products are growing steadily and represent more than 5% of Greenyard Fresh volumes and more than 3% of Greenyard Prepared and Frozen volumes.

Building on the success of the Sustainability Initiative Fruit and Vegetables’ (SIFAV) first term, Greenyard increased its involvement as the partners launched their new collaborative sustainability strategy for 2025. Beyond social compliance, all partners committed to reduce the environmental footprint (carbon footprint, food waste, water use) of priority products by 2025, while taking the first steps in improving living wages and income for farmers, and
implementing robust supply chain due diligence policies. In Mali, we continued our engagement in an Integrated Development Partnership to advance the growing of fresh mangos along with German development agency GIZ and other partners.

Organic Farmer Group
Taking Italy’s organic produce to the next level
“The establishment of the Organic Farmer Group (OFG) has allowed us to strengthen our ties with some of Italy’s best organic fruit growers. Together, we are creating shorter, more efficient and more transparent supply chains, to the benefit of both consumers and growers”, says Giovanni Glioti, Quality Manager at Greenyard Fresh Italy.

Organic fruit and vegetables are an important growth market. The number of people consciously choosing healthy and sustainable products is increasing rapidly. Italy has been at the forefront of this evolution and is today one of the world’s largest exporters of organic produce.

Focus on what they do best
In 2019, nine Italian producers joined forces to establish the OFG, led by Greenyard Fresh Italy. The aim is to further develop organic production for international markets and improve quality and production standards. “The OFG allows producers to focus on what they do best and enjoy most: growing some of the best fruit under the Italian sun. They no longer have to worry about aspects such as warehousing, packaging, labelling and production planning, which is centralised and taken care of by the Group”, explains Giovanni Glioti.

But there is much more to it than that. As a connecting partner between growers and retailers, Greenyard also makes sure that the demand of end consumers in stores and production on the field are much better matched. “Transparency in the supply chain is key”, says Giovanni Glioti. “It is our mission to translate our customers’ requirements – both in terms of volume and quality – to our growers. It allows us to create significant added value for both parties and reduce food waste.”

Visibility for consumers
The initiative has already convinced many growers of kiwi, stone fruit and pears to produce exclusively for Greenyard. “We plan to further expand the number of growers over time, increase volumes and add more categories”, says Giovanni Glioti. “We are also investing in training for farmers to help them meet certification goals. Regular visits to the farms allow us to experience their challenges at first-hand. Finally, we also want to make our farmers’ efforts more visible to consumers by including information about the origin of the products on our packaging.”
banana trees

Future plans
We plan to extend the scope of origins for which we require assurance on social standards in line with the ambition of SIFAV 2025. As such, we aim to have 100% of our grower base in both high and medium risk countries (SIFAV classification) certified by 2025.

Ahead of regulatory developments in terms of supplier due diligence, Greenyard is also developing a Supplier Code of Conduct at group level highlighting our expectations towards suppliers in terms of environment, social and governance matters.

In the coming years, we plan to further develop our vision on biodiversity and make our ambitions more explicit in the area of sustainable sourcing as well. Beyond good agricultural practices covered in our Quality and Safety
policies, we are already promoting more sustainable farming practices. We do so by educating our growers and supporting them to work more efficiently.