The commercial terms of the loans with Greenyard’s syndicated banks will now be directly linked to the sustainability performance of the company.
Its efforts will focus on three areas: climate change action, water usage, and responsible sourcing.
The progress made on these KPIs will impact the interest margins as the lenders will apply a discount, or add a penalty, based on the performance.
Greenyard CFO, Geert Peeters commented, "This important step demonstrates, once more, that sustainability is an integral part of all our decision-making processes.
"We translated our sustainability ambitions into concrete targets for the coming years and we are committed, disciplined, and motivated to achieve them."
The KPIs align with Greenyard's sustainability roadmap, with 2027 as its final target year.
In terms of climate change action, it aims to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 emissions by more than 50% within the duration of the loan.
It also plans to lower its Scope 3 emissions by engaging with suppliers and growers and allowing them to set their climate targets.
In addition, it has also set the goal to reduce the absolute amount of fresh water use across its operations by 480,000 cubic metres.
Greenyard aims to increase the percentage of goods sourced from certified growers in high- and medium-risk countries to 93%.
Peeters added, "We are thankful for the positive discussions we had with our banks, taking the time to understand the complexity of fruit and vegetables.
"It is known that fruit and vegetables are the most sustainable food category. Still, we take it to heart to continuously lower the impact within our own operations and stimulate our suppliers to fully engage in the ESG journey as well. For Greenyard, there is no other way than to strive to become ever greener, ever more sustainable."