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Promotion of responsible consumption

"Spain: "Ugly" fruit and veg promoted by Eroski"

Eroski has launched a new social awareness campaign to tackle food waste and promote responsible consumption. During the first two weeks of March, Eroski will once again market "ugly" fruits and vegetables, which do not meet the established appearance standards, but have the same quality in terms of flavour and nutritional properties. The campaign will be carried out in 560 stores of the chain, including 79 Caprabo stores and franchises. As a novelty in this edition, 14 renovated stores in the Balearic Islands will also participate.

Fifteen fruit and vegetable varieties sorted as second class because of their appearance or size, but with 100% of the expected nutritional and organoleptic qualities, will be offered to consumers with discounts of up to 50% in the price. Seven varieties of "ugly" fruits will be on sale: oranges, mandarins, lemons, apples, kiwis, bananas and avocados, and eight "ugly" vegetables: courgettes, peppers, carrots, aubergines, tomatoes, potatoes, lettuce and garlic.

In the latest edition of the campaign, held in November 2017, Eroski marketed a total of 643,680 kilos of "ugly" fruits and vegetables. The most popular were oranges (100,646 kilos), potatoes (100,039 kilos) and bananas (60,059 kilos). Compared to the campaign of the same month of 2016, the cooperative increased its sales of "ugly" fruits by 140%. "The campaigns organised in the past have all worked very well and have been positively rated by our customers. The 2016 ugly fruit and vegetable campaign was a success, with almost 800 tonnes sold, and in 2017, we exceeded that figure, with more than 1,000 tonnes sold during the two campaigns of March and November," said the director of Health and Sustainability at EROSKI, Alejandro Martínez Berriochoa.

With this new edition of the campaign, Eroski wants to give its consumers the chance to buy "ugly" fruits and vegetables to raise awareness about the food we waste that could be consumed and to avoid this as much as possible. "Every year, millions of tonnes of food are wasted in the world just because their appearance does not meet the required standards. 40% of the fruit that is produced in Europe is thrown away before reaching the stores just for being ugly; a huge waste about which we must become aware. That is why we have decided to launch a new campaign, to reinforce awareness of the need for responsible consumption. Eroski has traditionally shown a commitment to reducing food waste with our 'Zero Waste' program, and now we are organising a new edition of the campaign to promote the consumption of ugly, but quality fruit and vegetables," said Alejandro Martínez Berriochoa.

Eroski pioneer in the "zero waste" of food
Eroski has a firm commitment against the waste of food. It has done so through the development of the "Zero waste" program, which dictates that no food suitable for consumption will be discarded, but donated to charitable organizations based in the area close to the store. In 2013, thanks to this program, Eroski became the first distribution chain in Spain that achieved "Zero Waste" in its chain of hypermarkets and supermarkets.

"As a consumer cooperative, we cannot ignore the social commitment that drives us to tackle food waste. At Eroski, we want to take action to reduce the current waste of food," stressed Martínez Berriochoa.

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