On the way to PlanetProof strives for an agriculture in balance with the carrying capacity of our planet, with as much as possible closed cycles of raw materials, and valued by society and the market.
To achieve this, an integrated approach is needed, which involves working on sustainability on several themes in all links of the production chain.
Het is onze missie om de verduurzaming van productie en dienstverlening te bevorderen. Dit resulteert in positieve waardering van afnemers én consumenten.
On the way to PlanetProof focuses on increasing sustainability through multiple themes. This makes it all the more challenging because improvements in one area sometimes go hand in hand with lower scores in other areas. It takes a lot of craftsmanship to score well on all themes.
Curious about the requirements? Check out the sectors and certification schemesRead more
There are a lot of requirements and we really had to puzzle. – Radish grower Monique, Ortolanda
On the way to…
We go back in time for a moment. In 2017, SMK is starting On the way to PlanetProof. With this quality label, we are on our way to a more sustainable planet. The name is there for a reason. It makes it clear that sustainability is a continuous process of improvement with the final destination: a production method that is in balance with our living environment.
With On the way to PlanetProof, certificate holders also contribute to the sustainability goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals in the themes production and consumption, water and soil, landscape, and biodiversity.
The 8 themes of On the way to PlanetProof
Energy & Climate
Ambition: efficient and fossil-free energy consumption and minimal emissions of particulate matter, ammonia and greenhouse gases, contributing to a climate neutral Europe.
On the way to PlanetProof farmers and growers are working on this by:
- Saving energy
- Efficient production by making optimal use of raw materials
- Use of sustainable energy from renewable sources such as sun, wind and geothermal energy
- Capturing CO2 in the form of organic matter in the soil
- Complying with the greenhouse gas emission standards for covered crops
- Standards for emissions of ammonia, fine dust and minerals for dairy and poultry farms
- In dairy cattle: higher self-sufficiency and limit losses of cattle feed
Ambition: crop protection virtually without emissions and without damage to the living environment.
This is what On the way to PlanetProof does:
- Stimulates the use of biological and mechanical control of diseases, pests and weeds
- Limits the use of chemical crop protection products
- Imposing measures that prevent plant protection products from ending up in surface water
Biodiversity & Landscape
Ambition: to strengthen biodiversity (flora and fauna) and landscape on and around agricultural holdings.
On the way to PlanetProof farmers and growers achieve this by choosing from various measures:
- Creation of native, natural herb or flower borders around plots or greenhouses
- Provide nesting opportunities for birds, amphibians and insects
- Nature-friendly management of meadow plots, banks and ditches
- Construction of herbaceous grassland
- Limiting light emission from greenhouses
With these measures, certificate holders contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Life on Land.
Ambition: to realize and maintain a resilient and fertile soil.
A healthy and productive crop requires resilient and fertile soil. That is achieved by:
- Protecting the soil from erosion, desiccation, and depletion
- Promoting a diverse soil life, among other things by supplying sufficient organic matter
- Prevention of soil compaction, including through minimal tillage and the use of fixed tramlines
Ambition: efficient use and reuse of nutrients and prevention of emissions.
Farmers and growers fertilize their crops to help them grow well. This is what On the way to PlanetProof does:
- Requires efficient use and reuse of nutrients
- Stimulates the use of organic fertilizers
- Prevents losses to surface and groundwater
- Limits heavy metal levels in compost and phosphate fertilizers
Ambition: efficient water use from sustainable sources.
Certificate holders are working on this by:
- Monitoring of water use
- Collection and storage of rainwater for irrigation
- Only use of legal water sources
- Collection and reuse of water that has not been absorbed by the crop
- Measuring the water requirement of the plant and adjusting the irrigation accordingly
With these measures, certificate holders contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Clean water.
Material use & waste flows
Ambition: to minimize waste from production materials and packaging by re-use and the use of recycled and recyclable materials.
In the certification schemes there are requirements for:
- Materials of plastic packaging for optimal recyclability
- Waste reduction and waste separation
- Incentive to use of recycled materials
With these measures, certificate holders contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Responsible Consumption and Production.
Animal welfare and health
Ambition: the animals feel good, are kept in suitable housing, are in good health and exercise their natural behaviour.
The requirements for dairy and chicken farmers cover:
- Good animal health supervision: by taking good care of the animals, they have fewer weaknesses and live longer
- Availability of sufficient water and good nutrition
- ‘Free in the meadow’: dairy cows are grazing for at least 120 days a year for 6 hours a day. This means that the cows are allowed to graze on the land.
- Attention to animal comfort:
– For cows: cow brushes and more space in the barn to eat, walk and lie down
– For chickens: larger living areas (8 hens per m2) with daylight and control for a pleasant barn climate
The chickens from On the way to PlanetProof eggs do not always have to go outside freely. It is the choice of the farmer. The quality label not only looks at the theme animal welfare, like for example the Beter Leven quality mark. The themes of environmental impact, energy consumption and water are just as important. For the chickens it is better to be outside (welfare), but on the other hand it causes:
- higher nitrogen and phosphate emissions from chicken droppings around the house (environmental impact)
- more energy consumption (energy consumption)
- more introduction of diseases (animal health)
- dead chickens due to predators (animal health)
The requirements of On the way to PlanetProof are carefully compiled by a group of experts on these themes. SMK’s certification process describes exactly how this is done.Check certification process
Sustainable Development Goals
The Sustainable Development Goals are seventeen goals to make the world a better place by 2030. They were agreed upon by the countries affiliated with the United Nations (UN), including the Netherlands.
With On the way to PlanetProof, farmers and horticulturists contribute to achieving the sustainability goals in the areas of responsible production & consumption, living on the land, and clean water.
On the way to PlanetProof is one of the 10 top quality labels in the field of food in the Netherlands. For this, a label must meet a number of conditions.