Products smoked with CleanSmoke support sustainable consumption

Current world events are characterized by numerous crises. Despite these uncertainties, sustainability remains important to consumers. This is also confirmed by the current GfK Sustainability Index for October 2022, which stands at 39.71 for Germany1. In other European countries, sustainable consumption plays an even greater role: The GfK Index from Italy, for example, stands at almost 60. Both values have remained roughly constant since the beginning of the year – despite inflation and the looming energy crisis.

This year’s Global Sustainabilty Study by strategy consultants Simon Kucher & Partners also found that consumers reward innovative and climate-friendly foods with a greater willingness to buy. When it comes to sustainably smoked products, the CleanSmoke Coalition makes the case for the environmentally friendly smoking process of the same name.

CleanSmoke is smoke freshly produced from primary smoke condensate using compressed air – free of soot, tar, ash. Also, contamination with polycyclic aromatics (PAHs) is reduced by up to 71%. This allows food to be smoked with low levels of contaminants. CleanSmoke performs significantly better in environmental aspects compared to traditional friction and smolder smoking processes. This has been clearly demonstrated by a life cycle assessment conducted by the German Institute of Food Technologies (DIL).

Specifically, compared to friction and smolder smoking, around 50 percent of energy can be saved and – based on the current German energy mix – around 30 percent of climate gas emissions. In Germany alone, this would mean potential savings of around 600 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of energy and thus also around 72,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalents per year. 

This is one of the reasons why the EU has designated the CleanSmoke process as “Best Available Technique” (BAT).

Sustainable products should be recognizable

Due to a lack of labeling, the Simon Kucher & Partners sustainability study continues, consumers have difficulty recognizing which products are truly environmentally friendly. Almost 20 percent of respondents are hesitant to buy sustainable products. Companies are urgently advised to step up their game: through communication, transparency, or the clear indication with a seal.  The CleanSmoke Coalition’s central demand has long been a label for sustainably produced smoked products. “In this way, manufacturers and retailers can show more environmental responsibility and meet consumers’ desire for transparency,” says CleanSmoke Coalition Chairman Uwe Vogel.

1    The GfK Sustainability Index shows the importance of sustainability aspects in purchasing decisions for major purchases and fast-moving consumer goods and measures changes. The index covers past purchases under sustainability aspects, planned purchases and the willingness to pay a higher price for sustainable products. For this purpose, GfK surveys a representative group of around 1,000 consumers in Germany every three months.

Sustainability remains a top issue for consumers
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