Keith Nunes 2019

KANSAS CITY — Food Business News will elevate its coverage of environmental sustainability in 2023 with the introduction of Sustainable Solutions, an e-newsletter that will publish two times per month. Sustainable Solutions will expand upon what long has been a focal point of Food Business News’ editorial coverage to a stand-alone digital asset featuring exclusive content about how companies throughout the supply chain are striving to be more sustainable.

The goal of Sustainable Solutions is to keep management-level personnel informed about what companies are doing to operate more sustainably and what the marketplace expects from ingredient processing and food and beverage companies when it comes to sustainability. A challenge today for many is keeping pace with the growing number of technologies and techniques being employed. Sustainable Solutions will seek to keep its audience at the forefront of the topic.

Earlier this year, Food Business News identified environmental sustainability as the trend of the year. That designation followed the Institute of Food Technologists’ annual meeting and food expo where the subject appeared to reach a tipping point as many suppliers showcased individual ingredients produced through sustainable initiatives.

Regenerative and upcycled production practices are becoming more commonplace with some of the industry’s largest businesses making investments. In September, for example, ADM and PepsiCo, Inc. announced a more than seven-year agreement to collaborate on regenerative agriculture projects across their shared North American supply chains. Founded in 2019, the Upcycled Food Association now has 230 members who have received $769 million in investments since 2021, according to the association.

Environmental sustainability also will not lessen in importance over time. The concurrent trends of a growing global population that now exceeds 8 billion people needing to be fed and the now all-but-certain expectation the world’s industrialized nations will fail to meet the 2015 Paris Agreement goal of keeping the rise of global temperatures beneath 1.5°C will force this industry to produce more using less while at the same time dealing with the consequences of rising global temperatures.

These trends also are having an impact on consumer perceptions. Data from the market researcher HealthFocus International show 74% of consumers in North America say the health of the environment is “extremely important” or “important” to their overall health, outranking diet and exercise. Importantly, while nutrition and health and wellness remain top priorities regarding what consumers want to hear about from food and beverage brands, environmental issues are having a growing impact on food and beverage selection, according to HealthFocus.

“More and more consumers are taking that into account,” said Julie Johnson, general manager of HealthFocus, during a Nov. 2 presentation at the SupplySide West trade show. “Younger consumers are more discerning in their choices.”

The introduction of Sustainable Solutions is intended to create a clearinghouse of information readers may use to understand ever-changing customer and consumer expectations regarding environmental goals. You may sign up to receive the newsletter later this month by visiting and clicking the “Subscribe” tab in the navigation bar.