What was your best move?
”The sustainable cooperative structure,” says Sandra Sangiuolo, export marketing manager at Cirio’s headquarters in Italy.
“Our company group was born in the 1970s to associate and support 14,000 farming companies in a huge cooperative, spread all throughout Italy. It is now the backbone of Italian agriculture and it’s 100% farmer-owned.
“Our farmers’ mission has always been to sustainably grow their raw produce, harvest and transform it into safe and genuine products: they wanted to protect their lands and soil for their sons, to pass them from generation to generation.
”We share the same mission and ethics, but also knowledge, skills, techniques, technologies and innovation. And our farmers welcome the coordination and support from our headquarters to help achieve the end-game: to deliver the best quality whilst safeguarding the environment for the future.”
What will you do differently?
”We’re supporting our farmers in a more scientific way,” explains Georgina Jones, UK marketing manager for Cirio, ”and we’d now like to get all of them on board.
”We’ve introduced digital technologies – such as satellite views of the fields and using drones to spread useful insects – and we’re combining this with ancient, eco-friendly techniques like rotation of the soils.
”This ethos extends into our factories, which are powered by windfarms, our waste is recycled into energy and we are also reducing our packaging.”
What are you going to do next?
”We’re implementing a project to show that Cirio cares,” adds Jones. ”Starting with our Cirio Chopped Tomatoes, we’re going to communicate that they are climate-neutral.
”We believe our consumers will be happy to read our Cirio Farmers’ Pledge on our packs: that we are committed to producing the highest quality Italian tomatoes, sustainably. Then, following on from this, we will extend it to the rest of our products.”