30 December 2022
Less than two years after launch, producers and retailers around the world continue enthusiastically adopting the cross-category GGN label for farmed seafood, fruits, vegetables, flowers, and plants. Read about key achievements in 2022.
Rapid growth since launch in 2021
2022 marks the first full calendar year since we launched the current cross-category GGN label. Originally released in 2016 solely for aquaculture products, the GGN label grew in 2017 to include the flowers and ornamentals scope. The label further expanded with the addition of the fruits and vegetables scope in 2021, at which time we rebranded it as a single label with the familiar blue and yellow logo, applicable across all scopes.
The GGN label can now be found on over 1,600 products in 40 different countries around the world, and exciting developments are already in progress for 2023.
Recognition as a “top-quality label”
Dutch environmental foundation Milieu Centraal periodically evaluates and ranks consumer food labels in categories such as environmental sustainability, animal welfare, employee working conditions, and transparency. Milieu Centraal assessed the GGN label this year and for the first time rated it as a “top quality label,” an upgrade over the label’s previous score in 2019.
Of the 13 seafood labels that Milieu Centraal assessed this year, the GGN label was one of only two in the “fish, crustaceans, and shellfish” group to score higher than grade 3 out of 5 in every category – including ratings of 4 for environment, 4 for transparency, and 5 for control. This coveted top rating recognizes the GGN label’s more ambitious environmental credentials, transparency of its certification requirements, and reliable protocols to verify compliance, and underscores our commitment to constant improvement.
Flowers and ornamentals scope expands with new category
We were excited to again expand the GGN label in October 2022 by adding the new category of potted fruit and vegetable plants to the popular flowers and ornamentals scope.
Food safety is a concern for products in this unique new category, just as for harvested fruits and vegetables. However, potted fruit and vegetable plants are typically produced by growers of flowers and ornamentals. Therefore, products labelled under this new category must additionally undergo pesticide residue monitoring and comply with GLOBALG.A.P. Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) standards for fruits and vegetables, while also meeting labelling requirements for flowers and ornamentals. Adding this category gives producers further flexibility, while conscious consumers gain yet more options for responsible shopping with assurance and transparency.
In 2022, stores including Lidl, Rewe, Aldi, and more, marketed over 500 labelled products from the flowers and ornamentals scope in 27 countries around the world.
Keohane Seafoods of Ireland now features the GGN label on seven of their fish products as of this year, all of which they market through Lidl in Ireland. Likewise in 2022, farmed Atlantic salmon produced by Hofseth in Norway became the first GGN-labelled product in China, where it is available at Sam’s Club.
Labelled aquaculture products are also now available in the United States at Sam's Club, Walmart, Shoprite H&N, Lidl, and Aldi and the first labelled aquaculture products have been launched in Singapore and South Africa.
Fruits and vegetables
Increasingly more producers and retailers of fruits and vegetables are adopting the GGN label. The label now appears on cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, onions, potatoes, strawberries, oranges, kiwis, bananas, watermelons, melons, and more.
In 2018, Spanish supermarket chain Eroski became the first retailer in Spain to adopt the label on aquaculture products. Eroski further adopted the label on fruits and vegetables in early 2022, positioning them as the first retailer in Spain to offer labelled produce from both scopes under one roof.
Sing To Thong Trade Co., Ltd. is the first producer in Thailand to adopt the label. They will use the label on watermelons, melons, and bananas and will market these products through 7-Eleven and Lotus outlets in Thailand.
Portuguese retailer group Sonae MC adopted the label on grapes at their Continente supermarkets in 2022, adding oranges soon thereafter. In 2023, they will continue adding more options for consumers by offering labelled pears, apples, and carrots.
Spreading our message at trade fairs
Our GGN team hosted booths at this year’s Seafood Expo Global (SEG), Fruit Logistica, Fish International, Fruit Attraction, Tokyo Sustainable Seafood Symposium, and Trade Fair Aalsmeer, and we attended the summer edition of IPM in Essen.
These trade fairs have been a vital opportunity to build our network in the industry and share updates on the GGN label with thousands of individuals representing hundreds of companies from countries around the world. Every contact is a new opportunity to share how the GGN label makes responsible farming visible and how it offers consistent, consumer-relevant assurance and orientation throughout the store.