Press release 2020-08-25: Axfoundation’s practical work under the banner of Future Food, with innovations such as Swedish legume mince, has been nominated as Sustainability Initiative of the Year at Dagligvarugalan 2020, an event celebrating achievements throughout the Swedish grocery industry organized by trade magazine Fri Köpenskap.
When this year’s gala kicks off digitally on October 8, Axfoundation will be one of three finalists in the Sustainability Initiative of the Year category. The purpose of the category is to promote the Swedish grocery industry’s work towards a more sustainable environment. Within Future Food, Axfoundation is innovating and accelerating concrete solutions to practical sustainability challenges in the food sector. Among the successful initiatives is the recently launched legume mince, which with its Swedish ingredients is gaining ground both on store shelves and at wholesalers and contributes to a protein shift. Swedish legume mince is one of many ideas that were born and gained vigor at Torsåker farm, Axfoundation’s test farm and development center.
Axfoundation's colleagues in Future Food; Madeleine Linins Mörner, Andrea Giesecke, Anna Henning Moberg and Maria Lundesjö (Christin Hanssen not in the picture).
“We aim for Torsåker Farm to be a catalyst that contributes to the development of sustainable food production, innovation, knowledge sharing,” says Madeleine Linins Mörner, program director for Future Food, Axfoundation. “At Torsåker, we can literally follow every step of the process – from sprout to finished product, and in collaboration with the entire industry push towards sustainable food systems.”
Torsåker Farm, Axfoundation's test farm and development center for sustainable food production of the future.
By collaborating with actors across the entire food chain, Swedish legume mince has gone from idea to finished product on the shelves in less than two years. From first being sold on a small scale at retailer Urban Deli, the product is today included in several vegetarian meal solutions, including lasagna, taco mince and Bolognese sauce sold at Hemköp food stores and online food retailer Mat.se under Axfood’s private label Garant. The mince is also available in several ready-made dishes at Urban Deli and at the deli counter of selected ICA stores. Restaurants and public kitchens can buy the product from wholesalers.
As an independent non-profit organization with proximity to a large corporate group, Axfoundation has the opportunity to identify concrete sustainability challenges together with grocery players and pilot test practical solutions before they are scaled up. In addition to innovations in Future Good, Axfoundation also drives initiatives within the areas of Circular Economy, Inclusive Society, and Sustainable Production and Consumption.
Swedish legume mince that was born on Torsåker Farm consists of sweet lupine, broad beans, grey pea, leftovers from cold-pressed rapeseed oil production, and a little salt. Nothing more.
“We see ourselves as a test lab for new ideas, a ‘do tank’ rather than a think tank,” says Maria Smith, Secretary General, Axfoundation. “We want to inspire, share knowledge and drive the development of a more sustainable society. We hope that the work we do together with around 225 partners can inspire more people to take action. This nomination shows that we are on the right track.”
Axfoundation runs a development center for the sustainable food of the future at Torsåker Farm, just north of Stockholm. Representatives from the entire food chain gather here to find solutions for a sustainable food system. For example, delicious and sustainable alternatives to meat and reduced dependence on imported soy. Over the past year, their work with cultivating protein crops that can grow in Sweden has been very successful. The legume mince made from sweet lupine, broad bean and grey pea has made an impact with increasing volumes in both the grocery and restaurant industry. Axfoundation’s work at Torsåker has great potential to make a significant difference to Sweden’s future food supply.
Finalists of Dagligvarugalan 2020 have been nominated for 20 categories, including Sustainability Initiative of the Year. The jury groups consist of well-known figures of the Swedish grocery trade.
Some of the innovations and practical solutions Axfoundation worked with 2019-2020 as part of the Future Food program:
- Swedish legume mince: A sustainable, delicious and nutritious alternative to minced meat that contributes to a protein shift in Sweden.
- Underutilized fish species: Investigates the possibility of taking advantage of underutilized fish species such as bream.
- Five tonnes of green fish: Building an infrastructure to convert vegetable residual streams into a qualitative protein raw material for farmed fish.
- Antibiotics critera 2.0: Developing industry-wide criteria for antibiotic use and animal welfare when purchasing meat, dairy products and seafood.
- Perennial crops: A perennial wheat has been developed by domestication of intermediate wheatgrass.