As well as ensuring that our vegetables are of superior quality, we take responsibility so it is grown and produced with minimal environmental impact.
Over the past ten years we have developed and introduced the cultivate system called Findus LISA for vegetables grown on contract in Sweden. LISA stands for Low Input Sustainable Agriculture, i.e. sustainable production with small amount of inputs. We are constantly working to improve the Findus LISA. Our ultimate goal is to have Findus LISA quality of all the vegetables that are included in our products.
Low Input Sustainable Agriculture
1. Contract growing
Findus cooperates with approximately 600 local growers in southern Sweden. This cooperation is regulated through contracts which state exactly how production is to take place. Third-party certification of the plantations is mandatory.
2. Soil samples
Soil sampling and test growing in greenhouses guarantees that the soils we cultivate are suitable and free from diseases. We have tested a total of approximately 30 000 fields in just over 50 years.
Findus’ pea cultivars from own breeding are continually test grown in order to ensure good characteristics such as disease resistance, colour, texture, taste and yield.
4. Plant nutrients
Soil sampling and test growing in a greenhouse is done for all fields. In addition, the levels of phosphorus and potassium in the soil is analysed, as well as its pH level. Findus’ recommendations to the growers regarding plant nutrients are lower than official recommendations.
The planning of sowing in the different fields is done by Findus’ growing advisors, which produces vegetable harvests with the correct degree of ripeness and an even flow of raw material to the factory for washing, parboiling and freezing.
Regarding insects, weeds and fungal diseases, the goal is to control these without protectants. we can establish, however, that it is not possible to always produce good, even harvests of high quality with current technology and knowledge. Findus’ protectants are adapted to every individual field and we use significantly lower doses than stated in official recommendations. There are no measurable residues in Findus’ Swedish-grown vegetables (below the EU limits for baby food).
Access to water is important for vegetable growing in order to produce a good harvest of high quality and maximum utilization of soil nutrients. The leakage of nutrients is thereby also reduced.
In order to produce the best sweetness and tenderness in the vegetables, the time of harvest is crucial. Peas, for example, are at their very best during one single day. Harvesting is done with Findus’ own harvesters.
9. Quick freezing
The time between harvesting and freezing must be as short as possible in order to preserve the taste and vitamins. Findus’ peas are frozen within three hours of being harvested and on hot days, the peas are cooled with ice during transportation in order to avoid off-flavour.
10. Continuous improvements
The close collaboration between growers, agricultural department and Findus Research and Development has led to the continuous improvement of Findus’ LISA concept. A few examples are the treatment of seed with natural bacteria instead of chemicals, full traceability back to the growers, cultivars with better disease resistance and continuing work with the Swedish Seal of quality and Climate certification.