Biofach 2023 – corsus at the world’s leading organic food trade fair

corsus took part in hybrid events at Biofach in Nuremberg in person and online.  The Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture Cem Özdemir opened the worldwide trade fair for organic consumer products on 14th February 2023 and presented parts of the current nutritional strategy for Germany, which was already decided in the cabinet in December 2022. The part of organic agriculture should increase up to 30% in 2030. Among the advantages of organic agriculture for soil quality and biodiversity, it result in less costs for the community, based on a current study the costs are about 4 billion euros per year. Die Federal Minister pointed that the consideration of ecological systems enables farmers a good harvest nowadays as well as in 50 years, which guarantees the nutrition in Germany.

Biofach 2023

Short-term increases in yields at the expense of the environment result in depleted soils in long-term. It’s a fact, that our agricultural and nutritional system is responsible for about 25% of greenhouse gas emissions in Germany and is the main cause for decrease in biological diversity globally. The key issues paper makes is clear, that health-promoting nutrition in daycare and schools are necessary as well as in canteens and hospitals. This is only possible which a sustainable, predominantly plant-based diet with transparent and social supply chains, information on ingredients and corresponding impacts on the environment. In the congress main focus on the war against Ukraine, is was mentioned that peace in Europe and worldwide is the basis for food security.

Especially the following sessions are relevant for our work at corsus: a presentation of an analysis about the product environmental footprint (PEF) by the Öko-Institut, a networking event about true cost accounting (TCA) by TMG Think Tank as part of the CLIF-project and about sustainable performance accounting (SPA). Scientific models, which quantify and monetize environmental impacts and sustainable risks, result in limitations and uncertainties, which have to be mentioned clearly. Nevertheless, the accounting for sustainable impacts can make visible sustainable risks and hot spots in global supply chains. The processes in companies with the highest impacts can be identified in this way, e.g. greenhouse gas emissions, eutrophication, water use or violations of human rights. On the other hand, companies who protect common used services on ecological systems can be rewarded financially, e.g. for humus formation, diverse crop rotations, flowering and water stripes. LCA; TCA, and SPA can show these connections, but we need more engagement to collect company-specific data.

The presentation of the climate label planet-score and French database Agribalyse showed, that we need solutions which enhance the transparency now, but we also need methodological standards, which guarantee comparability. Even the social justice was mentioned: in global supply chains the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions cannot only be credited in the country where the product was sold (e.g. Germany), the reduction should have also a positive impact in the country where the resources are come from. In addition to interesting presentations impressions could be collected about new products: among several plant-based alternatives, a vegan mackerel based on soy protein and algae was presented, which was definitely a culinary highlight for our colleague Thea Kreutzburg. Further, nutritional trends were presented and live-cooking gave so much place for inspiration.

More information about life cycle assessments and TCA: corsus at COP27  

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