Dcoop Group and its US partner, Pompeian, have created the Sustainably Grown® certification that will make it possible to verify sustainability throughout the olive oil value chain, passing through all the links, from production and processing in the cooperatives to storage and packaging in the centres from Spain and USA. Pompeian currently has the only olive oil brand in the world with the Certified Sustainably Grown® label on its Sunrise Olive Ranch olive oil from Maricopa (California).
On the one hand, the idea of this Certification Programme is based on the strategic positioning of Dcoop Group and Pompeian in the market, fulfilling the objective of their alliance in 2015: “to be a world leader in the olive oil trade, addressing all global markets to be the benchmark operators“. In addition, certified products will ensure compliance with the new developments of European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), while meeting customer demand for validated sustainable products.
This Programme, managed by SCS Global Services, provides a global framework and a set of requirements to be met in agricultural production based on environmental management, social and ethical responsibility, economic sustainability and business integrity. Then, a multidisciplinary group made up of technical staff from Dcoop and a team from Pompeian has been set up to establish necessary process for implementing the Sustainably Grown protocol and obtaining the certificate in each cooperative and centre in Spain and USA. After the implementation of protocol, a group of independent external auditors will evaluate and verify compliance with each requirement in order to guarantee the reliability and transparency of certified centres.
In this respect, Dcoop has announced that it will start with an initial group of eight cooperatives to be certified in 2023/24. Subsequently, it has established the incorporation of an average of 15-20 cooperatives from the group per year, with the aim of achieving certification for all 97 cooperatives by 2027. The initial group includes ‘SCA Olivarera y Cerealista Nuestra Señora del Valle’ (Santaella), ‘SCA Agrícola Los Tajos’ (Alhama de Granada), ‘Nuestra Señora de Araceli’ (Lucena), ‘Grupo De Prado’ (Córdoba), ‘SCA Oleoalgaidas’ (Villanueva de Algaidas), ‘Dcoop SCA’ (Dos Hermanas), ‘SCA La Purísima Concepción’ (Alameda) and ‘SCA Agrícola Nuestra Madre del Sol’ (Adamuz).
Finally, Rafael Sánchez de Puerta, Managing Director of Dcoop, said “we are continuing to work towards sustainability and what better way to do it than with our Pompeian partners in order to achieve the objective of having our member cooperatives certified in environmental management in the near future“. Paula Lopes, Vice President of Quality, R&D and Environment at Pompeian, said, “As the first olive oil brand to achieve certification in United States and the only olive oil brand currently certified, we are proud to work with our partners from Dcoop to raise the standard of sustainability for olive oil. We are excited to continue to certify all of our farms and to add Dcoop cooperative to our certified portfolio“.