Planet-Score labelling system adds ultra-processed metric that’s welcomed by member brands
Planet-Score, the French labelling system that encourages better practices and transparency from food and beverage brands and producers, has unveiled further standards including an ‘ultra-processing’ metric, origin of ingredients and whether the workers in production were fairly paid.
According to the organisation, many consumers are interested and want information beyond the nutitional facts, and so they have “won the hearts of French and European players [and consumers].
In a recent press release, Planet-Score said that citizens’ expectations of transparency about what they eat are constantly growing.
It said that as most consumers are urban dwellers, and often very away from producers, “consumers need companies to show the reality behind the packaging”. It said that, at the same time, better legislative frameworks are needed to support the emergence of truly informative devices.
The European Commission, for example, plans to propose by 2026 a framework to promote transparency on the quality environmental, social, health, with the addition of animal welfare for livestock products.
In a press release Planet-Score said that right now, many producers are not transparent enough, particularly when it comes to the origin or the ultra-processed nature of products, and that, although there are many positives, it can be difficult for consumers to navigate the claims.
Despite the rigorousness of the labelling scheme, or perhaps because of it, many well-known brands are on board across Europe including Carrefour, Nestlé, Yoplait, Lidl and many more. And the move has been welcomed, at least by some.
Several Planet-score partner brands have also expressed their interest in going further in transparency, and among these are Fermiers de Loué, Omie & Cie and Biocoop.
Yves de la Fouchardière, director of Fermiers de Loué, comments: “We have been committed for a long time to implement demanding environmental and animal welfare specifications. We were pioneers in the display of the Planet-score on-pack from 2022, and we already carried the label Animal wellbeing. Our cooperative DNA is very close to breeders and strongly rooted in its territory also gives us a special responsibility on aspects related to the promotion of the work of producers, and local origin from production.
“We are happy to see that the Planet-score takes up all the issues, to further advance transparency in the market, and the possibility for consumers to compare. And U.S are even more happy to contribute on our scale to the amplification of this essential movement for the transparency, with this integral version. The preview presentation at our General Assembly on May 23lst, in front of more than 1,500 people, was the opportunity to see the extremely favourable reception that Planetscore receives, including this new development.”
Christian Jorge, President and co-founder of Omie & Cie added: “At Omie, full transparency has been in our DNA from the start. We were the first company to display the Planet-score on all our digital products (250 references), and we now show it on-pack. The prospect of having a tool that also shows these extra-environmental dimensions corresponds perfectly to our approach for the transition of modes of production and consumption, since we already provide transparent information on each of our products on our website. This new full Planet-score visual is an effective and clear summary of the major issues of the food industry. It is very stimulating to be able compare products at a glance, and this is a valuable dashboard to evaluate our offer, and manage it improvement if necessary, as we are already doing on the environmental dimensions and farming method with the device in a very operational and efficient way.”
Sylvain Ferry, Managing Director at Biocoop, continued: “We work naturally on environmental issues and fair trade, with specifications demanding loads, but also on the issues related to the ultra-processing of products, to go even further on the issues health related. We also have a strong strategy on the relocation and seasonality of products, and on the dimension for farmers (cooperation and equity): Biocoop today represents more than 20% of products from fair trade sold in France.
“We are happy to be among the pioneers of this Planet-score tool of complete transparency, and to contribute to making visible the whole of our commitments in a synthetic and applicable to all products. It is a comparison tool that will be very useful to shed light on the corresponds perfectly to our approach for the transition of modes of production and consumption, since we already provide transparent information on each of our products on our website.”