Harrys, fifty years of tenderness in our history
7 September 2021
“C’est si fort d’être tendre”, says Harrys’ new payoff: a tenderness that is not only that of its soft bread but also that which distinguishes the attention for the environment and for the community.
Harrys is the #1 boulangerie industrielle brand and in 2020 it celebrated its first fifty years. In 2002, the Barilla Group took it over from the German company Kamps, restoring an impetus that now makes it a European leader in the packaged soft breads sector.
The turning point in the corporate relaunch of Harrys came in mid-2015 with the inauguration in Chateauroux, in the heart of France, of a new 43,000 square meter plant and 8 production lines, with an investment of 47 million euros, the biggest ever made by the Barilla Group across the Alps. The relaunch continued and was renewed in 2021, when 26 million euros were invested in the Talmont-Saint-Hilaire bakery, one of the 5 production sites operated by Harrys, which employs 1,500 people across France.
HARRYS FOR THE WELLBEING OF PEOPLE AND PLANET
Today, the need to prioritise initiatives aimed at making the agri-food business even more resilient and consistent for sustainable development is further confirmed.
More than 90% of the fresh water used in the world is destined for agriculture and food production, while agriculture alone causes a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere and uses 330,000 square kilometers of land per year, a surface area slightly larger than Italy.
Our Group has taken a series of measures, which are gradually covering all brands, to reduce:
- direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions;
- the use of water resources in production processes;
- the use of non-renewable raw materials;
- waste production.
And Harrys is one of the leading brands of this turning point.
LOWER EMISSIONS AND CONSUMPTION, MORE RENEWABLES
The figures for Harrys' commitment to sustainability are very positive:
-22% energy used and gradual increase in the percentage of renewable sources;
-17% water use;
-22% CO2eq emissions;
99.4% recyclable waste.
In 2020, Harrys commitment to reducing greenhouse gases resulted in it becoming the third Barilla Group after Wasa and GranCereale, to fully offset its residual CO2eq emissions. It did so by participating in two large projects certified by VCS, the standard as well as the worldwide program for voluntary greenhouse gas offsets.
The first Floresta de Portel project, was set up to protect a stretch of Amazon rainforest in northwestern Brazil, one of the richest ecosystems on the planet, from the frenzied deforestation that is threatening it. The goal is ambitious: to prevent the emission of over 22 million tons of CO2eq into the atmosphere over the next forty years, while at the same time creating job opportunities for local communities.
The second project, Solar India, aims to spread the use of photovoltaic panels in the Indian states of Telangana and Maharashtra, in a country that currently fossil sources for 70% of its energy. Here too, the aim is both to dramatically reduce air pollution, by promoting the spread of clean and renewable energy, and to create significant job opportunities, thus improving the life of local communities.
HARRYS ON THE FRONT LINE OF RESPONSIBLE AGRICULTURE
The other fundamental aspect of Harry’s commitment to sustainability is responsible agriculture.
Soft wheat flour is the key ingredient of baked goods and Harry’s, in accordance with the Group's policy of sourcing preferably from local producers to support the communities in which it operates, has created Moelleux et Responsable (“Soft and Responsible”), a project that includes the Harrys Charter: working with other players in the supply chain, agronomy experts and certification bodies, Harry’s has written 40 agro-ecological rules that define good practices for the sustainable cultivation of wheat, with which the entire supply chain is required to comply.
Many farmers immediately welcomed this initiative: in 2020, Harrys bought around 90,000 tons of soft wheat produced according to this Charter from 560 French farmers (180 more than in 2019), and the future goal is to ensure that 100% of the soft wheat purchased is produced responsibly.
OUR ACTIONS FOR THE FUTURE
The future for Harrys is closely linked to the only possible method of food production: responsible, close to people and friendly to the environment. A future that we work for every day, with commitment and passion, to bring soft bread – and “tenderness” – to French people.
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