Rafael Boix, CEO, Foodiverse speaks to FoodBev about the company’s commitment to sustainable agricultural production, its creation of ultra-fresh salads and ready-to-eat vegetables, as well as its engagement with children’s nutrition – all of which are at the heart of the healthy revolution.
What exciting developments will evolve from Foodiverse replacing Grupo Alimentario Citrus (GAC) as their corporate brand?
The Group has grown considerably over the last five years, focusing on internationalisation and diversification. During this time we have multiplied our turnover by 2.6 and quadrupled our workforce, reaching 2,500 employees in 2019.
Today, we have clients on all continents and headquarters in four different countries. The new brand will allow us to unite all of our companies operating within the fields of agricultural production, salads and ready-to-eat vegetables, and children’s nutrition.
Moreover, Foodiverse will be able to interact with different audiences in various countries, transmitting our firm commitment to healthy eating and innovation, as well as food safety, quality and sustainability through the optimisation of processes and the efficient use of resources.
What does a ‘healthy revolution’ entail; how will Foodiverse take a slice of the action?
The healthy revolution is Foodiverse’s commitment to offering a universe of transgressive and trendy products designed to be enjoyed at any time of the day in any place.
We understand that healthy eating is a source of wellbeing, health, energy and balance, as well as a way to enjoy life. It focuses on responsible and sustainable consumption, a more natural origin of the products, nutritional transparency, and less food waste. All our products breathe this philosophy, so through them, we bring the healthy revolution to our customers in more and more countries around the world.
Could you tell us more about your role as CEO, including your core responsibilities and objectives?
My role as CEO of Foodiverse is to promote the growth of our business units in different markets, channels and client bases in a responsible and sustainable way. In this regard, there are six strategies on which this growth is based:
• Talent: Investing in the preparation of our human capital and incorporating new talent
• Local management: Our strong local presence allows us to adapt to the needs of each moment in each place
• Operational efficiency: Adaptation and flexibility to incorporate the latest technologies
in all our processes
• Innovative spirit: Turning food trends into new products and anticipating the demands
of our customers
• Customer focus: Product leadership and operational excellence
• Profitability: A source of responsible growth.
Are you currently working on any innovations in the ‘ready-to-eat’ sector that you would like to share with our readers?
We are working on creating ultra-fresh salads that contain more ingredients and have a shorter shelf life. We have already launched them in Switzerland and Germany, and want them to reach other countries.
When it comes to sustainability, we are working to expanding our product offering of environmentally-friendly packaging materials, such as cardboard. Right now, 100% of our salad bowls are recyclable and 70% of the material comes from recycled material.
How is Foodiverse working to promote and engage with sustainable methods of agriculture and cultivation?
As an example, I would highlight our Farmitank project, a vertical farming system that enables us to cultivate regardless of characteristics such as location, terrain or weather conditions. It enables the cultivation of any type of leafy species anywhere using only 15% of the surface area and 5% of the water used to cultivate in the open field.
Likewise, we have several projects aimed at creating a circular economy, sustainable use of resources (particularly water and energy, zero waste, or food safety), and we collaborate with multiple organisations in R&D projects. In short, we work to make the entire value chain sustainable.
What does corporate social responsibility (CSR) mean to you? How is Foodiverse taking action here?
Our CSR policy is aimed at achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the UN within the 2030 agenda.
More specifically, we are making a significant effort to increase efficiency in agricultural management and natural resources, especially water. We also promote a healthy lifestyle with our fresh products, ensuring clear and transparent labelling. And finally, we promote the use of recyclable and reusable packaging, while working with our supply chain to minimise food waste.
Where do you see the food industry heading in the near future?
The latest trend studies show the Covid-19 pandemic has caused the growth in online channels, including people over 55 who almost never used these platforms beforehand. Additionally, they also point out a greater demand for local and healthy products.
On the other hand, it is also observed that, although sustainability will continue to be an important factor in decision-making, there will possibly be a change towards packaged products that guarantee greater food safety.
And what does the future hold for Foodiverse?
Foodiverse marks a milestone in our business track record. Our new corporate identity integrates the international vision of the Group, which will help us to build a solid and profitable global company.
With Foodiverse we look to the future while highlighting the importance of our valuable legacy. We will continue to innovate, improve our processes and seek new synergies within the Group that allow us to consolidate our healthy revolution.
Find out more at Foodiverse’s website: foodiverse.com.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019