From left to right: Dick Pouwels (HAS University of Applied Sciences), Piet de Bruijne (Farm Frites), Han Weber (the province of South Holland), Bram de Vos (Wageningen University & Research).
Oudenhoorn, the Netherlands, 15th March 2019
Farm Frites, HAS University of Applied Sciences, Wageningen University & Research and the province of South Holland signed the covenant "Green Circle Sustainable French Fries Chain" at Farm Frites in Oudenhoorn on 15th March. This concludes a literally fruitful collaboration. The parties will work together on the reduction of greenhouse gases, the promotion of sustainable energy, the promotion of biodiversity and a healthy soil with sufficient organic substances.
Farm Frites wants to be known as a driver for sustainable business. Cooperation in the chain and with the immediate environment is important. "We fully support this initiative," says Piet de Bruijne, owner of Farm Frites. "In the past years we have grown into a global organization. But parallel to this growth, it is in our genes to work sustainably. The Green Circle fits in with our sustainability strategy. Specifically, we want to reduce the CO2 emissions of the factory in Oudenhoorn, related to natural gas and electricity, to 0 and we want to work on a CO2-neutral chain. We will achieve this ambition with the help of sustainable energy technologies. Making logistics and mobility more sustainable is also an important theme, aside from increasing safety. In addition, we are committed to reducing the local importunity caused by transport movements between the Farm Frites plant and the Second Maasvlakte. "
At Farm Frites, potatoes are processed directly from the land into French fries. Healthy soil is of course crucial. For that reason Farm Frites wants to work with the growers in the region on sustainable and vital companies. So that local potato cultivation is also guaranteed in the future. Wageningen University & Research is involved in the scientific substantiation of the pilots. "For workable solutions we have to link our knowledge with that of our partners," says Bram de Vos, director of the Environmental Sciences Group on behalf of Wageningen University & Research, "because a healthy soil not only contributes to production, but also to climate-positive agriculture and the enhancement of biodiversity in and around the fields. 'HAS University of Applied Sciences brings science and research together in education programs and through student engagement. Dick Pouwels, chairman of the HAS University of Applied Sciences: "It is particularly important for the new generation of students that cyclical agriculture becomes part of the standard. By participating in Green Circles, we innovate as a school and we have an impact on thinking and acting in the agri-food sector. "
Green Circles is a method to tackle complex social challenges with different parties. The degree of coherence and complexity of the assignments are the reason why no single party can find the solution alone. Deputy Han Weber from the province of South Holland: “We therefore consider the trade-off between issues such as landscape quality, sustainability and energy issues. We acknowledge each other's interests and our common ambitions.” In addition to the Green Circle Sustainable French Fries Chain, other Green Circles are active, including Cheese & Subsidence around the De Graafstroom dairy. Companies, knowledge institutes and the government in the Green Circles work together in an open and equal manner. In striving for a sustainable society, Groene Cirkels uses nature as a partner. Groene Cirkels was created in 2013 from a collaboration between the province of South Holland, Heineken and Wageningen University & Research for the development of a climate neutral Heineken brewery in a climate neutral chain, a sustainable economy, a pleasant living environment and knowledge for a climate neutral society. Naturalis Biodiversity Center and the Rijnland District Water Control Board later joined this covenant. For more information, visit www.groenecirkels.nl.