CEO Lamb Weston / Meijer
‘Raising the bar, making an impact’
What important external trends, such as regulatory or macroeconomic, do you see impacting the sustainability agenda?
‘There is clearly a polarisation taking place in many areas, Brexit being one example, the imposition of trade tariffs another. One of the consequences of this is the suboptimisation of world trade, creating transportation issues that, ultimately, result in the consumption of more energy. A second consequence is that it pushes sustainability further down the agenda. On the other hand, we have extreme weather which negatively impacts crop yields, one third of food still wasted globally, and millions of consumers indicating how concerned they are about packaging waste and plastics ending up in the oceans. This drives businesses to step up their actions.’
‘In 2018 we saw the impact that extreme weather can have on the agri-food sector, with an exceptionally hot summer leading to droughts, which in turn caused a reduction in potato harvest and crop quality. We have also had summers with extremely heavy rain or even hail, and it is these types of events that highlight the need to continue to work hard on our sustainability agenda. They also underpin the importance of remembering that delivering a French fry to a consumer starts with planting a seed potato in the ground. We should never forget that we have a responsibility from field to fork.'