More sustainable food: ZNU demands different pricing from trade centers

Sustainability in times of pandemic and Ukraine crisis means more than ever taking a stance and jointly developing and implementing solution measures

25-Mar-2022 - Germany

The ZNU - Center for Sustainable Management at the University of Witten/Herdecke is calling on German retailers to change the way they price food. Currently, it is mainly the manufacturers who have to cope with increased production and transport costs, says ZNU director Dr. Axel Kölle.

Private Universität Witten/Herdecke gGmbH

Dr. Christian Geßner and Dr. Axel Kölle

Many manufacturers under the ZNU umbrella have made considerable investments in sustainable management and more sustainable raw materials in recent years, without this being directly reflected in prices for consumers. In addition, currently rising prices for raw materials, packaging, energy and transportation are additionally contributing to raising the costs of producing food and other consumer goods to previously unimagined heights, which can threaten the existence of individual companies.

The sustainable design of supply chains means taking into account all three dimensions of sustainability, i.e. the economic, the ecological and the social. In concrete terms, this means that when producing chocolate, for example, companies look at the social and ecological aspects under which the cocoa is produced in the countries of origin, such as the Ivory Coast, and how the small farmers also benefit.

ZNU Director Dr. Christian Geßner: "We are very concerned that sustainability is falling by the wayside because small and medium-sized producers in particular are currently lacking breathing space due to the tough negotiating positions of the trade, and in many cases they can no longer produce to cover their costs. In other countries ways are found, in Germany it seems to be much more difficult to get into a cooperation; however, this is more necessary than ever against the background of the extreme current situation due to pandemic and Ukraine crisis."

The two ZNU leaders continue: "It cannot be that most trade centers in Germany are currently not prepared to share the massively increased production costs of the manufacturers, respectively not to pass on some of them to the end consumers. If we want a sustainable economic system, this must be carried from the manufacturer over the trade up to the final consumer."

For years, the ZNU has acted as a platform - especially for small and medium-sized businesses - and as a bridge to the German food trade to bring more sustainable business forward together. ZNU continues to see this bridge as important.

Note: This article has been translated using a computer system without human intervention. LUMITOS offers these automatic translations to present a wider range of current news. Since this article has been translated with automatic translation, it is possible that it contains errors in vocabulary, syntax or grammar. The original article in German can be found here.

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