Engaging all the links of the supply chain – farmers, manufacturers, stores and community – Jerónimo Martins works hard to fight food waste, not only by using “ugly vegetables” (non-standardized) in its products but also by donating edible food that no longer can be sold in the stores. In the farming fields, non-standardized vegetables that used to be set aside are now being channelled as raw material for the production of soups for the Pingo Doce instore restaurants and take-away sections.
The ugly vegetables are also sold in Recheio Cash & Carry at a discount price, thus reaching the HoReCa (Hotel/Restaurant/Coffeeshops) sector. These vegetables also go to manufacturing units to be washed, cut and packed. They come out of the factories as ready-to-eat salads to be sold at Pingo Doce’s stores.
Downstream of store operations, there is another combat being fought against food waste that translates into the support to surrounding communities.
At the end of each day, store employees select products that, despite being perfectly good for consumption, for one reason or another, cannot be sold to customers. These products are afterwards picked by charities that, later on, distribute the food among those who need it the most. In 2015, the use of non-calibrated vegetables and donations to charities amounted to nearly 20,000 tons of food and 15 million euros.