ARENDAL (Nettavisen): The most cheerful man in the grocery industry, Ole Robert Reitan, brought his usual sense of humor to Arendalsuka.
This is despite the fact that the topic is serious. Reitan called on the food industry to take joint action for the climate.
He wants it to be easy for consumers to get information about climate impact. Reitan envisions that food product packaging will be labeled in the same way as the food’s calorie content.
We are 30 percent of the problem
Reitan Retail is, among others, behind Rema 1000. Approximately 1 in 4 grocery stores in Norway is a Rema 1000 store.
– What ends up in our store It accounts for 30-35 percent of the world’s total climate problem, says Raytan.
World food production accounts for between 25 and 35 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Studies show that.
The difference of 10 percent indicates different definitions of what is included in the diet.
Food production requires huge amounts of water, energy, soil resources and fertilizers.
I got a stern phone call from Rema 1000: – I think they panicked
Raytan: – I’m not going to point to a scapegoat
– We should talk about CO₂ because then we can actually measure it. We have to say what CO₂ is emitting, how much we’re emitting and how to measure it, he says.
According to Raytan, the food industry did not agree with the quality of the data. He believes there is a lack of will to invest in value chain insight.
But he will not point to a scapegoat.
– It’s very bad timing to point it out to each other. In the Norwegian value chain, we have long indicated too much to each other in all kinds of discussions, says the manager, and adds;
– It is precisely in this respect that we cannot simply point out or blame each other. We only have one choice. Let’s go through it skin and hair and do everything we can, every one of us, he says.
Reitan does not directly answer whether customers will encounter a different Rema 1000 in the future. But he says they’ve given more space to fruits and vegetables, which produce lower emissions.
In addition, they have several projects on packaging.
Industry warns: – We need a new climate settlement
Reitan believes that the industry has a responsibility to cooperate with the appropriate actors, and to exclude those who make irresponsible choices.
The grocery industry has a responsibility to have the same knowledge and insight. In this way, we can make demands for all of our partners. As he says, it is our responsibility to report everything we do, and to ask others to report.
Personally, he believes we still have a long way to go to reach climate goals.
New heat waves on the way: – Severe weather is the new normal
The grocery industry has long been criticized for using too much plastic and packaging materials, especially for fruits and vegetables. The industry itself has indicated that reducing the use of plastic, for example, in cucumbers or peppers, leads to a shorter shelf life.
– There are dilemmas here because you often have to choose between plastic that you control, or increased food waste, which is also very devastating, he says.
A third of food goes in the trash
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that a third of the food produced globally goes to waste Lost. Losses are estimated at 1.3 billion tons of food annually.
Food waste is standing around Ten percent of global greenhouse gas emissions are man-made, according to the United Nations Climate Panel.
The Norwegian Environment Agency Nettavisen reports that the most recent aggregate figures for food waste across the entire value chain in Norway are from 2020.
In 2020, 453,650 tons of edible food ended up as waste in Norway. There is about 10 percent less food waste than was measured in 2015.
The Norwegian Environment Agency does not have figures on the climate footprint of food thrown away in Norway.
– If for the first time you have a climate footprint of 35 percent of the world’s total, Then in Norway you can throw away 30-40 percent of what is produced in addition to that, nonsense, says Reitan.
He says that Rema 1000 in Denmark has gone further in the fight against food waste. In Norway, this proved not to be so simple.
– Do you have good enough ranking procedures in Rema 1000?
No, of course not, but it certainly applies to the entire value chain worldwide, he says, explaining that it’s like an accordion, either too much or too little.
He believes there is still a lot to do when it comes to routine in stores. But also in a predictable value chain.
– So you have the goods you need, neither too little nor too much.
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