In the food industry, the sustainability of raw materials has become vitally important and, for a company operating in this field, it is essential to integrate sustainable practices at all stages of the production chain, from the supply of raw materials to the valorisation and disposal of waste.
Aware that the adoption of a strategic approach to sustainability is also crucial at a European level, Andriani SpA, with the support of Circularity, has set itself the challenging goal for the year 2019 of formalising its first Strategic Sustainability Plan.
Through direct discussion between the Circularity team and the representatives of Andriani’s main corporate functions, as well as with the Management itself, a precise analysis of the context in which the company operates and the main sector trends was carried out. The streamlining of ongoing projects and the identification of the main stakeholders as well as the material aspects on which to focus the company’s efforts over the next few years, triggered the process of drawing up a three-year plan with specific and measurable objectives, divided by priority of intervention.
At a time when the world’s population continues to grow and so does its need for food, food waste issues become an increasingly urgent priority. Approximately one third of global food production is wasted every year, an unsustainable trend that European Union member states have set themselves the goal of slowing down by reducing food waste by 50% by 2030.
Andriani SpA, considered one of the most important companies in the innovation food sector, has confirmed its innovative and far-sighted nature by integrating ambitious objectives related to the theme of reducing food waste in its Strategic Sustainability Plan with a zero waste challenge.
One of Andriani SpA’s direct actions in combating food waste is to intervene at the source, reducing waste production by 5% per kg of product by this year, creating a system for monitoring and traceability of waste divided by type with the aim of increasing recovery capacity.
The opposite front of action to the direct reduction of waste is to intervene upstream in the production cycle, i.e. in the use of raw materials: Adriani SpA is in fact working on defining criteria for the reduction of raw materials in its recipes, devising products with a number of ingredients evaluated according to their real nutritional contribution and promoting the development of single-ingredient recipes.
Following the interventions that act in input and output to the production chain, the next step is to enhance production in line with circular economy principles, re-evaluating the materials used for packaging with a view to ‘Eco-design’: by 2021, the physiological food waste coming out of Andriani SpA’s production chain could be reintroduced into the production cycle in a new form, i.e. as bio-based and biodegradable packaging materials.
In addition, among the objectives of the Strategic Plan is the introduction of plants for the energy valorisation of process waste and by-products: what cannot be used to produce sustainable packaging material can feed biomass boilers and bio-methane co-generators for the production of renewable energy by 2022.
Finally, to complete the strategy of valorisation of its waste by 2021, Andriani SpA has included in its Sustainability Plan the possibility of analysing its food residues for the production of pet food, enhancing their use from ‘waste’ to ‘food’.
With a strategy of reducing its waste that involves all stages of the production chain, from the use of raw materials to the energetic valorisation of organic residues, Andriani SpA, with the support of Circularity, has chosen to pursue a strategy consistent with the ‘zero food waste challenge’, benefiting not only from the economic advantages of valorising its resources, but also from the awareness of reducing its environmental impact and thus making its brand stand out from its competitors in the sector.
TOWARDS CARBON NEUTRALITY
Andriani SpA’s commitment to minimise food waste and maximise the recovery of its production waste is part of a broader and more ambitious project that sees the company involved in achieving climate neutrality by 2025.
The neutralisation of Andriani SpA’s Carboon Footprint is based above all on the management of its own energy sources and related direct emissions into the atmosphere. The electricity used in the brand’s production plant already comes from renewable sources, allowing the company to have a virtuous impact in terms of direct emissions. Nonetheless, Andriani SpA, in collaboration with Circularity, has chosen to undertake more challenging direct emission reduction measures, including offsetting actions outside the company perimeter.
In terms of energy efficiency, the concrete goal for 2020 is to switch to energy self-production from the start-up of the 800 kWe trigeneration plant designed by the Innovatec Group, a partner of Circularity. This choice will make it possible to meet more than 96% of electricity, 70% of cooling energy and 37% of thermal energy needs, with 8% of the total energy produced sold to the grid. With this configuration, Andriani SpA will reduce its emissions by 201 tonnes of CO2 per year, a share equal to the average electricity consumption of 100 Italian households.
In addition, a feasibility study is currently underway to develop additional renewable capacity through the installation of a photovoltaic plant on the roofs of buildings; this is a goal that the management of Andriani SpA believes will be achievable by the first half of 2021.
Including the bio-methane production plant project mentioned above, the formalisation of a policy on sustainable internal mobility and the launch of planting and reforestation initiatives in collaboration with the local Park Authorities, it is soon clear that Andriani SpA has included Carbon Neutrality at the basis of its corporate strategy, orienting its business choices towards the priorities of Sustainable Development.