At the Fi Europe 2023, Kerry’s vice president of business development, Pieter Paul Lamers, will give a presentation called ‘Clean label = Clear label?’. The talk will explore a number of themes related to sustainability and food waste, while highlighting how the company is working towards a series of innovative solutions.
“Goal number two of the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals is zero hunger, while the objectives of goal number 12 specify zero food waste,” said Lamers.
“The global issue of hunger and food insecurity has shown an alarming increase since 2015, a trend exacerbated by a number of factors, including the pandemic and conflicts. Part of this cannot be solved by the food industry. But in the parts of this challenge that we can impact, there is an important opportunity for us to make a difference. Specifically, by reducing food waste and delivering on our sustainability targets to fight climate change, with the aim of avoiding deepening inequalities.”
“Let’s work together to achieve these targets!”
Building a portfolio of functional technologies
With over 30 years of experience in the field of business development for food ingredient development, Lamers is heading up the company’s journey towards market leadership in functional technologies.
Lamers explains that this has led to Kerry’s extensive portfolio of different functional ingredients, as well as a range of preservatives that include natural fermented products, together with highly effective and low carbon footprint concentrated products.
With an extensive innovation pipeline, the company is aiming to build on its existing portfolios with a range of biobased products with very low carbon profiles that will be positioned alongside its naturals range.
Risk mitigation is key to reducing food waste
The constant development of Kerry’s innovation pipeline is underpinned by its strong team of experts who work very closely with the company’s clients and partners to develop workable solutions.
Specific to food spoilage, Lamers explains how the team is focused on understanding the exact needs of its clients in order to test the efficacy of its clients’ products and find ways to make improvements.
“With the help of predictive models, we can make accelerated and informed assessments on risk mitigations that serve to optimise recipes and with targeted improvements that impact food safety and shelf life,” Lamers said.
“Reducing food waste is a shared responsibility, and partnering to share data from the entire value chain - from ingredient suppliers to retailers - can help to reduce food waste substantially. Predictive models developed from our libraries of data in application allow us to make targeted, proven, and validated recommendations on the efficacy of ingredients within a specific recipe which allows us to optimise shelf life and ultimately meet this goal of improving food safety and reducing food waste.”
Future advances in food spoilage preservation
Looking to the future, Lamers believes that retailers are going to be playing a bigger part in the food waste reduction equation. This will see retailers partnering with the food manufacturing industry to deliver products with reduced waste numbers, both in store and in home, with improved and extended expiration dates serving to boost such efforts.
“Recipes will be optimised with the most effective ingredients based on real study data on shelf life and food waste generated from across the entire supply chain.”
“We see the industry paying closer attention to the carbon footprint of the ingredients they use as well as the carbon impact of downstream food waste.”
Ultimately, Lamers believes that his team’s work in the area of food preservation innovation will help Kerry to achieve its ambition to reach over two billion people with sustainable nutrition by 2030.