Food producers in Germany

The food industry in Germany is made up of manufacturers of food and animal feed and, together with the beverage industry, forms the so-called food industry. The German food industry currently employs around half a million people in 5,600 companies (each with more than 20 employees). The turnover of the German food industry was recently around 160 billion euros - with the largest share of turnover in the "slaughtering and meat processing" segment (Statista).

Consumer spending on food by private households in Germany, which has been increasing for years, and steadily growing foreign trade are leading to rapid developments in the industry, both in terms of turnover and investment. In addition to prices and food safety concerns, the market is increasingly focusing on sustainability and climate neutrality: seals, certifications and sustainability reports are now an integral part of the business.

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Our service for food producers

A quality management system certified according to ISO 9001 primarily serves to ensure the product quality required by the customer and to optimise existing company processes. The system is often a "must" in the contract award process - also internationally: business partners want to underpin good cooperation with a certified quality management system.


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Seminars on the topic of quality management

Food production and processing involves considerable consumption of energy, water and raw materials and the emission of large quantities of emissions.

Reducing food waste is a particularly important issue. The 10 largest food retailers worldwide, such as AEON, Ahold Delhaize, Carrefour, IKEA Food, Kroger, METRO AG, Pick n Pay, The Savola Group, Sodexo, Tesco and Walmart, have already joined an international initiative "10x20x30", which aims to reduce waste by 50% at 20 direct food suppliers by 2030.

An ISO 14001-certified or EMAS-validated environmental management system provides the foundation for continuous improvement in environmental performance and helps your company meet regulatory requirements through the economical use of raw materials and energy, permanently reduce costs, and respond to ever louder calls for more ecological action.


Offer of the GUTcert Academy

Seminars on the topic of environmental management

By introducing an energy management system according to ISO 50001, potential savings can be identified and energy sources can be used more efficiently. In addition, a certified system protects you against the particularly complex legislation in this area.

As an accredited certification body with a wide range of approvals, we issue certificates that not only fulfil the standard requirements, but also guarantee recognition by state authorities.

For example, state benefits or tax refunds, such as the Special Compensation Scheme (BesAR) under the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) and the successor regulation to the Peak Compensation Scheme under the SpaEfV, are linked to the operation of a systematic EnMS in accordance with ISO 50001, EMAS or (for SMEs) an Alternative System. Our certification is worth your money.

Evidence of sustainability-related performance is increasingly becoming a mandatory criterion in major tenders. The awarding of contracts in the value chain of the food industry also often depends on what a company does and how transparently it communicates this.

The motivation for listed companies arises either directly from the CSR-RUG reporting obligation or indirectly for small and medium-sized enterprises, as they are part of the supply chain of large companies.

RSPO Supply Chain Standard - the product certification for sustainable palm oil

Whether chocolate, baked goods or convenience food: palm oil can be found in all of these products. With supply chain certification of sustainable palm oil in accordance with the RSPO Supply Chain Standard, you are making a valuable contribution to nature conservation and compliance with human rights - and even going beyond what is required by law.

REDcert2 certification

REDcert2 is a certification system that enables companies in the food and feed sector to demonstrate compliance with certain sustainability criteria. The certification requirements relate to recycling, water management, energy efficiency, soil compaction and social commitment, among other things, and are based on the REDcert-EU system and the SAI (Sustainable Agriculture Initiative) criteria. REDcert2 relates to the entire supply chain and is therefore one of the few sustainability certification systems that can be applied at all levels - from the farmer to the supply and trade level.

Sustainability management - public proof of special commitment

Introducing a sustainability management system and writing a sustainability report helps companies to systematically achieve their sustainability goals and ensure their profitability.

A validated sustainability report in accordance with DNK or GRI is an important instrument for presenting economic, ecological and social corporate performance to business partners, customers, NGOs and the public and for creating trust.

The EcoVadis platform carries out one of the most important sustainability rankings of companies in Germany. When selecting suppliers, a validated sustainability report not only offers companies advantages in the ranking, but also ensures participation in tenders and the awarding of contracts.

SARIA Germany's sustainability report

The SARIA Group operates internationally as a manufacturer of quality products for human and animal nutrition, agriculture, aquaculture and pharmaceutical and industrial applications. GUTcert not only certifies the associated companies such as EcoMotion, ReFood and SecArnim, Sarval, but also validates SARIA's sustainability report.

Climate neutrality

Climate-friendly labelling is one of the biggest challenges facing the food industry. How should consumers recognise climate-neutral products in the sea of green packaging? And how can you as a company credibly communicate your pioneering role in climate management?

GUTcert supports the food industry here by verifying the so-called carbon footprint as proof of climate-neutral products and companies.

In order to remain competitive, your company should also develop a climate strategy now. It is a prerequisite for long-term investments in climate-friendly technologies and renewable energies for heating and cooling, and the conversion of vehicle fleets and sales offices.

But how does one draw up a greenhouse gas balance? Which emissions are calculated and which may be disregarded?

Process for achieving climate neutrality

Carbon Footprint

The Corporate Carbon Footprint (CCF) shows the greenhouse gas balance for companies. It is an important factor for food manufacturers: in the B2B sector it plays a role in awarding contracts, in the B2C sector it can influence public image, sales figures and thus market share.

Politicians at international and national level are also calling for a reduction in fossil energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). And the German government's Climate Protection Programme 2030 provides for an increasing price on GHG.

As an accredited verification body, GUTcert supports you by verifying the carbon footprint of your company.

The Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) is a credible proof of the climate neutrality of individual products. The product life cycle is considered, from production to sale to the retailer or end consumer (cradle-to-gate) or to disposal (cradle-to-grave).

Does your company want to use the PCF in brand communication? The quality of the data, the reliability and transparency of the methodology are decisive for a critical public - especially because indirect emissions are also determined here.

With a verification of your PCF, you receive the necessary security for your communication through reliable data.

With food scandals on the rise, compliance with food standards is essential today.

The HACCP concept helps you to increase general food safety, minimise the risk of product recalls and thus strengthen your position in the market. An HACCP concept can be audited completely separately, but can also be easily integrated into an already existing quality management system according to ISO 9001. This also minimises the audit effort in the case of a combined audit.

FSSC 22000 certification has been recognised by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) as equivalent to other approved procedures such as IFS or BRC. Thus, FSSC is widely accepted by all parties involved in the supply chain.

FSSC 22000 certification combines requirements of ISO 22000 and the sector-specific preventive programmes of the ISO/TS 22002-X series. In addition, there are specific FSSC 22000 requirements. With AGRIZERT Zertifizierungs GmbH, we have a strong partner with a lot of experience in the field of food and feed certification. We will be happy to provide you with an individual offer or answer your open questions.

Attention: Food retailers and logistics centres that are considered operators of critical infrastructures (KRITIS) are obliged under the IT Security Act (§8a (3) BSIG) to have their internal security guidelines audited. ISO/IEC 27001 is a target-oriented instrument for this and also helps to meet industry standards.

An occupational health and safety management system (SGAMS) certified according to ISO 45001 helps to minimise accident and illness-related absences in your workforce. The introduction and maintenance of an SGAMS is primarily linked to environmental management.

As a member of the globally represented AFNOR Group, GUTcert offers you certifications worldwide - also in combination with, for example, environmental or quality management.

Linking or integrating different management systems not only brings cost benefits but also organisational simplifications. If the different requirements are combined in an integrated system approach, this minimises the overall expense for setting up and maintaining the entire management system. Price advantages of up to 50% compared to the separate handling of the individual procedures are not uncommon. By combining audit dates into a single on-site audit, for example, the time required can be reduced, as the duration is then significantly shorter than the sum of the individual audits.

EcoStep 5.1 and EcoStep Wine

We also offer the cost-effective and effective Integrated Management System EcoStep 5.1. EcoStep is specially tailored to the needs of businesses with up to 250 employees. It covers a freely selectable combination of core elements of the following ISO standards:

EcoStep 5.1 Wine is an integrated management system for wineries. Accepted by the supply chain and well-known retailers such as Aldi, Edeka, Rewe, Metro and others, the system looks at a winery's operations and uncovers potential for improvement in specific areas without focusing too much on formal compliance with standard elements. The focus is rather on the real benefits for small businesses.

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In cooperation with RKW Bremen GmbH, we test and certify the core requirements for quality management, environmental management and occupational health and safety laid down for EcoStep. EcoStep is a lean, cost-effective management system tailored to SMEs with up to 250 employees.

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With AGRIZERT Zertifizierungs GmbH, we have a strong partner with a lot of experience in the field of food and feed certification. We will be happy to provide you with an individual offer or answer your open questions.

Selected publications

Be smart: Benefit from the experience of our customers and concentrated GUTcert knowledge in white papers, presentations and guides on various topics.

Guide from energy management to climate management

Guide from energy management to climate management

You already have an energy management system according to ISO 50001? Then you don't have far to go to climate management: our guide shows you how to do this in a structured way - over 5 steps in 14 steps.

Which certifications are particularly relevant for food producers?