Gérard Bakery, Belgium's Pioneer in Sustainable Baking, Aims for Change.
In a groundbreaking move, the European Union (EU) has announced legally binding goals to address food waste in the food supply chain, marking a significant step towards a more sustainable future. These goals set ambitious targets for EU countries to combat the alarming levels of food waste still prevalent in our society.
Under the new regulations, EU member states are asked to reduce food waste by specific percentages by 2030. The production and processing sector is required to achieve a 10% reduction, while an even more challenging target of 30% reduction is set for retail, food service, and consumers.
The EU's commitment to tackling food waste comes as no surprise, given the alarming statistics surrounding this issue. Globally, one-third of all produced food goes to waste, accounting for a staggering 8% of the world's CO2 emissions. In Belgium alone, an average of 345 kilograms of food per person is wasted annually, posing both environmental and economic concerns.
A recent study conducted by Too Good To Go, involving 300 Belgian bakeries, sheds light on the extent of food waste within the sector. The results show that bakeries lose almost 7% of their weekly production, either through unsellable products or discarded items. Shockingly, some bakeries leave half of their daily production unsold. According to 63% of the surveyed bakers, the main cause of this waste is consumer demand for fresh bread and pastries throughout the day, leading bakers to produce more than necessary.
In this context, Gérard Bakery, a start-up, has positioned itself as a pioneer in the bakery sector, taking the lead in a more sustainable and conscious approach. With their innovative system of pre-ordering and subscriptions, Gérard Bakery ensures precise production planning, minimizing surplus stocks, and significantly reducing the risk of food waste. This strategic approach not only saves valuable resources but also lowers the considerable CO2 emissions associated with food production and waste.
To elevate their commitment to sustainability further, Gérard Bakery has implemented green energy solutions. Their electric ovens are powered by sustainable energy generated from solar panels on the bakery's roof. By utilizing solar energy, Gérard Bakery significantly reduces its ecological footprint while providing customers with the joy of guilt-free indulgence. Additionally, the bakery uses locally sourced, high-quality grains, further minimizing their environmental impact.
Moreover, Gérard Bakery, which exclusively offers home delivery, has established an environmentally conscious delivery service using a fleet of electric vans charged by the same rooftop solar panels. This forward-thinking approach minimizes emissions and contributes to cleaner air and a sustainable transportation system. Customers also won't be awakened in the early morning hours by the rumbling noise of a diesel engine. A win-win situation!
While the bakery sector grapples with the EU's new targets, Gérard Bakery stands as an example of how sustainable practices can seamlessly integrate into daily operations. Their commitment to reducing packaging waste is evident in their future plans to retrieve packaging during the second delivery for reuse or recycling. With this innovative approach, Gérard Bakery showcases its dedication to the principles of the circular economy.
The introduction of legally binding goals to reduce food waste by the EU reflects a collective ambition to address this urgent issue. Gérard Bakery, aligned with this vision, has worked diligently for nearly half a year on renovations, a new website, and a successful seed funding round. The bakery's efforts have resulted in a successful launch in Brussels, with sales taking off immediately and overwhelming positive feedback from customers.
As the bakery sector grapples with the challenge of food waste, Gérard Bakery is ready to take the lead and champion the fight against waste. Their innovative practices, driven by a strong commitment to sustainability and quality, have positioned them as pioneers in the industry. Embracing the EU goals and striving for continuous improvement, Gérard Bakery aims for a responsible and conscious food industry, where each delightful bite contributes to a more sustainable world.