Focus on climate, CO2 and responsibility

Pupils, politics and business actively engaged in a trialogue at ERBACHER the food family on the topic of sustainability and sustainable nutrition.

Last week at ERBACHER the food family was all about “Fridays for Future”. On Wednesday and Friday, the family-owned company welcomed two classes of 8th and 9th graders from Miltenberg to offer interested students a platform for critically examining sustainability and climate protection during two excursions.

Kleinheubach, 17 July 2019 – With the “Fridays for Future” demonstrations, young people around the world are setting an example that calls for a more conscious approach to the environment and natural resources. ERBACHER the food family shares this concern and has therefore invited school classes from Miltenberg to provide them with the company’s internal expertise and experience on the subject of sustainability, but also to provide space for a critical discussion with business and politics.

We want sustainability!

On Wednesday, 10 July, the Johann-Butzbach-Gymnasium as well as District Administrator Jens Marco Scherf took advantage of this opportunity, and on 12 July a class from the Realschule followed the invitation with District Construction Manager Andreas Wosnik. It quickly became clear that the so-called Generation Z already has a wealth of knowledge in the area of environmental protection at a young age and sees many problems that need to be actively addressed – from the vast amounts of plastic waste and the deforestation of the rainforest to the climate threat posed by air travel and automobile traffic.

Our Earth is the responsibility of us all

District Administrator Jens Marco Scherf took up the young people’s criticism and readily answered their questions: “Politicians are well aware of the problem and the awareness of young people. I too see that we will destroy our livelihood in the long run if we just carry on like this. Every single one of us has a responsibility.” Frank Erbacher, CEO of ERBACHER the food family, was also available for an open discussion: “The problem is that we often do not see the earth and other people in the world as partners. At the food family, we want our children, their families and animals to be able to feed themselves with a good feeling, healthily and enjoyably – and in a good global community.”

For the food family, sustainability – or future-proofing, as they call it at the family business – is anything but a new topic. “The family business has always tried to live up to its role as a thought leader and pioneer in this area as well, and is aware of its responsibility as a producer of food for people and animals,” explained Fabian König, CSR manager at the food family. The company has set itself an ambitious goal – to operate in a climate-neutral manner in Germany by 2020 and internationally by 2025. To achieve this goal, the food family relies on a variety of resource-saving as well as environmentally conscious measures and offsets a large part of its CO2 emissions through forest conservation in Tanzania.

In partnership for sustainable development

In addition to presentations with information worth knowing on the topic of sustainability and climate protection, the students and food family employees examined the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in interactive workshops. The groups then reflected on the social environment of the young people as well as on the food family as a business enterprise. The aim of these activities was to bring the theoretical topic of “sustainability” into the reality of each individual’s life. This was followed by an exciting class challenge, in which the students were able to transform the renunciation of consumption that is harmful to the future – such as “3 days without electronic entertainment devices”, “4 days eating vegetarian” or “2 days only walking or cycling” – into a healthy cereal breakfast for the class. The workshop was rounded off by a joint climate-friendly lunch, which invited further lively exchange.

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Anke Heyer

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