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Knorr’s farmers share their thoughts on sustainability

Suppliers share why responsible agricultural practices matter to them.

We know sustainability matters to consumers. In fact, the findings from Knorr’s foods attitude survey reveal that 76% of people are more likely to buy products with sustainably sourced ingredients.

Knorr aims to source 100% of its top 13 vegetables and herbs sustainably by the end of 2015 – thanks to strong partnerships with the suppliers and farmers in our supply chain.

In September, Knorr brought together key farmers, suppliers and Unilever teams at a summit in Belgium to share best practice on sustainable agriculture.

The event was attended by some of Knorr’s Landmark Farmers – a title awarded to farmers who display best practice in line with Unilever’s Sustainable Agriculture Code, and implement technology to limit their impact on the environment.

Engaging the experts in farming

“The aim of the event was to engage our Knorr Landmark Farmers as part of an expert community as well as allowing them to clearly see the rewards of their progress in sustainable agriculture so far, and how this ultimately helps Knorr to provide high-quality and great-tasting products to consumers,” explains Anna Koklanakis, Knorr Senior Global Brand Manager, Sustainability.

We spoke with two of Knorr’s Landmark Farmers to find out what sustainability means to them and to the way they do business.

Name: Rafael Carranza

Rafael Carranza

Crop: Tomatoes

Country: Spain

“Growing tomatoes is essential for us. It’s more than just business. It’s an absolute passion from the moment we put it in the greenhouse until we harvest it.

“For many years agriculture has been very aggressive towards the environment. What we are trying to do is revert the situation. We want to recreate the native flora and fauna to help eliminate harmful insects. We have introduced habitats for reptiles and refuges for bees and wasps. The bees pollinate the flowers, and the birds and other insectivores eat the larvae of the bad insects.

Soil fertility: the foundation of it all

“We are now saving 70% water compared to what we consumed many years ago, with channel irrigation. Soil fertility is a key question because it is the foundation of everything. We have adapted our practices and our machinery is much more sustainable. We use tractors less so we burn less fuel. And we lower the risk of soil compacting to preserve its fertility.”

Name: Guillaume Brierre

Guillaume Brierre

Crop: Herbs

Country: France

“I grow aromatic herbs. Mint mainly, and tarragon. The farm has been in the family for 100 years and for me, sustainable agriculture means to produce a healthy product. It also means that whoever follows me on the farm could work with the same desire, on the same land. “We use water irrigation sustainably in many ways. It’s to protect my successor. That person needs water to grow herbs.

Guaranteeing the future for our children

“My tractor is equipped with a GPS which allows me to be more precise in applying fertiliser on the plants. That allows me to pollute less, to use less fertiliser.

“We must take care of the earth, of water. We must guarantee the future of agriculture for our children.”

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