The Continente Producers Club, which has been working in partnership with national producers for 25 years, bought 519 million euros in certified national products in 2022, 22.6% more than the previous year, the equivalent of 240 thousand tonnes of goods sold in the brand stores. The number of producers increased from 256 to 267 in 2022.

The 267 producers spread across the country represent sectors such as butchery, fruits and vegetables, charcuterie & cheeses, bakery and pastry, fishmongers, take-away, olive oil, rice, legumes, honey and jams, pastes and pâtés, flour, frozen foods, eggs, dairy products and wines and employ around 11,000 people, directly and indirectly, across 200,000 acres of production area.

So far, there are 13 certified producers and 25 in process for the Zero Residue Certification, which guarantees that the supply of national Fruits and Vegetables is free of pesticide residues at the time of harvest (according to European Regulation 396/2005 and below the quantifiable limit of 0.01 ppm). This certification also safeguards principles of efficient use of resources, lower energy consumption, lower emissions and greater control over microbiological aspects, a key issue with regard to food safety and integration with the environment, guaranteeing the sustainability of the entire agricultural system.

In addition to Zero Residue Certification, the Continente Producers Club develops other programmes for fruit and vegetable producers, namely the Agroecology Programme, which supports management processes, ecological planning and the adoption of good practices based on the efficient use of resources, soil conservation, ecosystems and biodiversity; and the Zerya Regenerative Programme, which allows producers to check and make decisions in order to guarantee better soil conditions, safeguard plant nutrition and manage available water.

With the goal of promoting the conservation of the Harrier Eagle, the Continente Producers Club joined the project that intends to value the contribution of the national wheat crops for the promotion of bird biodiversity, including that of endangered species such as this one. Through this initiative, the approximately 4,500 tonnes of wheat used by the Continente stores’ bakeries already come from wheat fields in the Alentejo region, which are monitored in order to guarantee the preservation of the Harrier Eagle.

In 2020, Continente became the only Portuguese retailer with certification in all its fishmongers, in accordance with the Chain of Custody Standard of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). The Standard guarantees the traceability of products from sustainable fisheries with MSC certification and aquaculture farms with ASC certification, from their origin to the final consumer.

The certification of Continente’s fishmongers covers all Continente hypermarkets, three logistics platforms (responsible for receiving and distributing fish), as well as training for more than 1,000 employees and teams in the group’s fresh produce and logistics section.

MC, which integrates Continente, is also a member of GLOBALGAP, the most widely used agricultural certification program in the world, which transforms consumer requirements into good practices demands.

The aim of the Continente Producers Club is to provide customers with excellent national products, that are product of a partnership work with suppliers, supported by technical-scientific knowledge and which makes it possible to align the offer with consumption trends. The CPC has established a ‘Declaration for Sustainability’ for its members, based on 11 principles and several initiatives (such as the Harrier Eagle protection project), to promote sustainable production and consumption and a food system that respects the environment.

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