Transparency and fairness in relationships with suppliers
In recent years, environmental and social issues have become increasingly relevant in consumers’ food choices. As the leading provider of foodservice for travellers, Autogrill Group is well aware of this and firmly believes in the importance of offering its customers healthy, safe, quality products capable of contributing to their wellbeing and that of the planet.
Autogrill is committed to developing supply relationships based on the principles of transparency, integrity, impartiality and contract fairness, the cornerstones of the Group’s supply chain policy. It also guarantees that its supply chain maintains high standards of quality, food safety and, above all, sustainability throughout the process, from sources of raw materials to working conditions in all phases of production.
To this end, in 2017, Autogrill Group issued its Group Supply Chain Sustainability Guidelines, drawn up with assistance from the Global Compact Network Italy Foundation.
These Guidelines set standards for assessing suppliers and define the basic principles characterizing the Group’s approach to sustainable sourcing (Supply Chain Management Approach).
Pathway to sustainable coffee
Autogrill Group’s sustainability commitment is based on the adoption of responsible raw materials selection practices and the privileging of collaboration with domestic and local suppliers wherever possible.
Autogrill has been working particularly hard to step up its sustainable sourcing of coffee, a product that’s central to the experience of travellers who stop off at Autogrill points of sale all over the world.
Regarding the issue of exploitation of coffee plantation workers in equatorial countries, Autogrill has collaborated with a number of suppliers – including Kimbo, Segafredo and JDE – to be able to offer, in certain countries, blends that are organic, fair trade and sustainable.
In the Netherlands, 90% of Autogrill’s coffee is already certified sustainable, while the remaining 10% is in many cases sourced from roasters who buy coffee direct from small local farmers, thus favouring development and wellbeing in their communities.
One of these suppliers is Gosling Coffee, a Dutch company that buys coffee beans direct from farmers in Uganda, Ethiopia, Ruanda, Peru and Colombia and pays the local producers a really fair price. But this isn’t the only way in which Gosling Coffee has a positive impact on the communities involved. They also provide farmers with training and consulting so they can improve the quality of their coffee by picking the beans in a sustainable manner. In special training programmes, farmers learn to recognize the exact colour the beans should be when ripe for picking. In Uganda, for example, farm workers are issued with bracelets of the shade of red the beans should have: in this way all the beans are worked and used, thereby reducing both waste and work time.
The same coffee sourcing methods are adopted by other Autogrill suppliers. One example is Copenhagen Coffee Lab, a chain of craft roasters that source their coffee beans in many countries, working with local farmers and building solid relationships with the territory. As in Colombia, where a very special type of coffee – El Aguila – is cultivated on small plots in micro-communities. Copenhagen Coffee Lab’s project helps both to conserve the environment and create more opportunities ensuring a fair wage for local families.
Autogrill uses this approach in another continent too, in Bali, where it buys from Expat Roaster, a group of roasters that work in close contact with Indonesian producers and farmers to produce coffee that’s not only sustainable but also of higher quality.
Autogrill’s objective is to extend these virtuous practices so that, by the end of 2025, 98% of the coffee it sources for its proprietary points for sale is certified sustainable and/or coming directly from small local famers.