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FiBL: SMART Tool to assess food chains

by Leo Frühschütz (comments: 0)

A woman and a man evaluating salad
With the SMART Tool, FiBL has developed a method to make the sustainability performance of companies transparent. © iStock/DragonImages

In Switzerland, the Fair Food Initiative failed in a referendum. It wanted to oblige the government to strengthen “the supply of food that is of good quality, safe and that is produced in an environmentally and resource-friendly manner, animal-friendly as well as made under fair working conditions”. To this end, it should lay down requirements for production and processing - also for imported food. After all, 38% of the Swiss supported this proposal.

Making sustainability performances transparent with SMART Tool

The political debates prior to the vote had shown that supporters and opponents were mostly in agreement on at least one point, wrote the Research Institute for Organic Agriculture (FiBL): “More sustainability and transparency regarding the origin and production methods of food are desirable.” In this context, FiBL pointed out that with its SMART tool it had already developed a “globally tested approach” to make companies’ sustainability performance transparent.

SMART stands for Sustainability Monitoring and Assessment RouTine and is a tool for assessing the sustainability performance of companies in the food sector on the basis of the sustainability guidelines of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). It was presented by FiBL in 2013. SMART analyses are now carried out by the FiBL subsidiary Sustainable Food Systems. FiBL cited the sustainability assessment of more than 500 suppliers for the brand “Zurück zum Ursprung” of the Austrian food chain Hofer (Aldi Süd) and the assessment of 100 cocoa producers in Ecuador for the Swiss food retailer Coop as current projects.

Please also read: High-tech in organic agriculture - the Internet of Things


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