The "Award for Acting in Partnership" in the food value chain, offered for the first time by the German Food Association (Lebensmittelverband Deutschland), the Federal Association of the German Food Trade (Bundesverband des Deutschen Lebensmittelhandels), QS Quality and Safety (QS Qualität und Sicherheit GmbH) and the Foundation LV Münster (Stiftung LV Münster), goes to the branded meat programmes "Rasting" and "Bauernliebe" (farmer love) of EDEKA Rhein-Ruhr and "The Duke of Berkshire" of Handelshof Köln.
The Awards were presented on 8 October in Cologne during the executive summit of ANUGA 2021 by Franz-Josef Möllers, Honorary President of the Westphalian-Lippe Farmers Union (Westfälisch-Lippischen Landwirtschaftsverband) and Josef Sanktjohanser, President of the German Retail Association – (Handelsverband Deutschland HDE e.V.), on whose initiative the new award is based.
The main prize of €20,000 goes to the "Rasting" and "Bauernliebe" programmes, in which EDEKA Rhein-Ruhr with its meat processing plant Rasting in Meckenheim, the Münster-based slaughterhouse Westfleisch and 2,500 farmers have joined forces under contract. In these branded meat programs, unique in its dimension in Germany, pigs, calves and young bulls raised under special quality and husbandry conditions are marketed with price premiums. The partners have been working together since 2017. In the case of "Rasting" and "Bauernliebe" programmes, the jury was impressed by the breadth of the range (pork, veal and beef), the many years of trusting cooperation, the many participating farmers and the constant further development of the concept. The jury praised the fact that the farmers receive purchase guarantees for their animals and special price supplements based on the classic official quotation. The programmes have proven that it can be rolled out on a large scale to the food retail trade (LEH).
The high-ranking jury also honored the programme "The Duke of Berkshire" with a special prize of €5,000 as a particularly innovative lighthouse project. Here, breeders, piglet producers and fatteners (represented by Dr. Jens van Bebber, fattener from Samern near Rheine) have joined forces with the slaugtherhouse Brand Qualitätsfleisch (Lohne), the meat processing plant Kasteel (Mönchengladbach) and the Handelshof (Cologne). The pork, which is consistently produced to the highest animal welfare standards (outdoor climate), is marketed in the high-price segment, primarily to restaurants and hotels. Initiated in 2014, "The Duke of Berkshire" program is impressive for its highly collaborative and innovative approach. For example, the reliability (long duration of contracts) and the investment subsidy from the trading partner for the conversion of the stables is exemplary. There is a fixed payout price per kg slaughter weight and per piglet, which is not based on the official quotation and which is agreed before the start of the barn conversion. All agreements regarding costs, prices and quantities are made jointly in the chain, the jury appreciates. The whole pig is marketed and paid for. The jury is aware that this is a high-priced marketing channel that cannot be transferred one-to-one to the general food retail sector. Nevertheless, the project deserves a special prize because it consistently leaves established marketing channels behind and seeks new approaches.
The aim of the Partnership Award is to shine a spotlight on beacons of particularly collaborative partnership between producers, processors and retailers. "We have succeeded in this. We received 28 very good applications from eleven federal states, covering the most important areas of domestic food production: Meat and sausages, cereal products and baked goods, fruit and vegetables, as well as the dairy sector," says Josef Sanktjohanser, who is very pleased with the response to the call for entries.
"There have been many discussions recently between farmers, processors and traders, yet cohesion in the value chain is better than its reputation. Our award winners are proof of that. When people work together honestly, reliably and in a spirit of trust, and the partnership is designed to last, the entire value chain benefits, Franz-Josef Möllers is convinced. "In the future, we must manage to think and act much more intensively from the farmer to the store counter and speak with one voice," Möllers urges the industry to be more cohesive. This would make it easier to cope with crises such as the current one on the pig market.
The jury responsible for awarding the prize is made up of leading figures from agriculture, food retailing, the food industry and science. They include Joachim Rukwied, President of the German Farmers' Association (Deutscher Bauernverband), Franz-Josef Holzenkamp, President of the German Cooperative Association (Deutscher Raiffeisenverband), Hubertus Paetow, President of the German Agricultural Society (Deutsche Landwirtschafts-Gesellschaft), Dr. Christian von Boetticher, Chairman of the Federation of the German Food Industry (Bundesverband der Deutschen Ernährungsindustrie), Friedhelm Dornseifer, President of the Federation of the German Food Trade (Bundesverband der Deutschen Lebensmittelhandels), René Püchner, President of the German Food Association (Lebensmittelverband), Annette Kirste, Public Affairs, Aldi Nord and Stefan Legat, self-employed EDEKA merchant and Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board EDEKA Nordbayern-Sachsen, Thüringen.
The jury also nominated the following projects for the shortlist for the "Award for Acting in Partnership":
For more information on the winners and shortlisted applicants, visit www.stiftung-lv-muenster.de/projekte/fairnesspreis/.
About the award organizers:
Lebensmittelverband Deutschland bundles and represents the interests of the most important players in the food industry in Germany.
Bundesverband des Deutschen Lebensmittelhandels represents the interests of companies in the food trade vis-à-vis politicians, authorities and the public.
QS Qualität und Sicherheit GmbH has been working for comprehensive process and origin assurance of food production in Germany since 2001.
Stiftung LV Münster was founded in 2012 by Landwirtschaftsverlag Münster. In particular, it promotes communication between town and country.
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