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Fresh Produce

Coop Italia Launches Campaign For Pesticide-Free Fruit And Vegetables

Coop Italia has launched a campaign to eliminate pesticides from Coop-branded fruit and vegetables.

The retailer aims to gradually remove four types of herbicides, including glyphosate, from its own-brand fruit and vegetables.

The fresh produce departments of some 1,100 Coop stores will offer fruits completely free of these pesticides by the end of May, the retailer reported.

The Campaign

Cherries will be the first of the 35 Coop-branded fruit and vegetables to eliminate pesticides.

Presently, the retailer sources cherries from 116 suppliers and more than 7,000 farms.

In 2019, a total of 15 crops will be made pesticide-free, including melons, grapes and clementines.

Over the next three years, the campaign will include all Coop-branded fruit and vegetable products, amounting to a total volume of over 10,000 tonnes and a market value of €325 million.

Pesticide Reduction Strategy

The new campaign was officially presented by Coop Italia at the MacFrut fair, in Rimini, as a follow-up to its pesticide reduction strategy, which was initiated 26 years ago.

Since then, more than ten chemicals have been eliminated from Coop private-label products.

Coop Italia president Marco Pedroni said that the retail group promotes precision agriculture, or "innovative agricultural technologies capable of improving the efficiency, yield, and sustainability of crops."

Previously, Coop Italia phased out the use of GMOs and palm oil in its products, as well as the widespread and/or systematic use of antibiotics in livestock.

© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Branislav Pekic. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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