Sustainable Sourcing

Sustainable Sourcing

Sustainable Sourcing - The Issue

The food service industry is growing, with an increasing number of people eating out. This means a rising demand for ingredients. To guarantee supply we need to continue improving the way we produce these ingredients. It starts with the way we source the raw materials they are made of.

Our Approach To Sustainable Sourcing

Chefs want to use the best quality ingredients. We believe that sustainably sourced ingredients, grown in optimum conditions, can deliver high quality and great taste.

That’s why we’re using sustainably grown ingredients in our products. By providing chefs with superior products that are sourced sustainably we can minimise the impact we have on the environment and support agricultural sustainability.

By sharing information on the source of our products, we are also meeting an emerging demand from chefs and guests.


The Knorr® Partnership Fund And Landmark Farms

Unilever recognises that producers may want help to improve their sustainable practices. We support producers, who become partners in our Sustainable Agriculture Program, to improve their growing practices in a sustainable way.

To speed up this improvement pilot projects are funded by our €1 million Knorr® Partnership Fund. To date, the Partnership Fund has set up 28 projects in ten countries.

In addition there are Knorr® Landmark farms in Spain, Italy, Greece, Portugal and Germany. These farms are agricultural role models for local producers, showcasing inspiring examples of sustainable practice.

For example in Spain, we advised farmers on sustainable techniques to increase yield, reduce the use of pesticides and optimise water usage.

Agricultural Sustainability

What We've Achieved

  • We now source 59% of our top 13 vegetables and herbs from sustainable sources — and by 2015 we will achieve 100%.
  • In 2012, Knorr® launched its first range of sauces made from sustainably grown tomatoes into the UK market.

Sustainable Sourcing Of Other Agricultural Raw Materials

Our progress on sustainable sourcing is strong. In addition to sustainably grown fruit and vegetables, there are other raw material groups in our top ten that we are tackling: palm oil, paper and board, soy, sugar, tea, sunflower oil, rapeseed oil, dairy ingredients and cocoa.

Lipton® Iced Tea

At the end of 2012, all palm oil used in our products came from sustainable sources and by 2020 all palm oil will be purchased from certified and traceable sustainable sources. 

By the end of 2012, 39% of the tea purchased for all our brands was sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. 

In Western Europe our Hellmann’s®, Knorr® and Calvé® brands have been sourcing 100% of their eggs from cage-free range hens since 2009.

Learn more about Lipton® and the Rainforest AllianceFind out more about Unilever’s sustainable sourcing programs

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