UK – Beverage giant Heineken has announced the successful completion of its first large-scale regenerative agriculture barley harvest in Europe. 

This milestone, achieved through Heineken’s Transitions program in collaboration with French cooperative Vivescia and its malt subsidiary Malteurop, marks the company’s initial venture into regenerative farming at scale. 

The initiative involves approximately 200 Vivescia member farmers in northeastern France, covering around 25,000 hectares. These farmers have adopted regenerative farming practices to enhance soil health, biodiversity, climate resilience, and water resources.  

Heineken plans to expand the programme to include 500 farmers by 2025, reaching up to 1,000 farmers and 100,000 hectares by 2026.  

The brewer intends to purchase most of the barley from these farmers to support its goal of reducing scope 3 agricultural emissions by 30 percent by 2030. 

“This program will help the growth of regenerative farming, introducing a groundbreaking model for sustainable grain production,” Heineken stated.  

The initiative’s scale, industry-led approach and holistic focus on sustainability metrics—such as carbon, soil, water, air, biodiversity, and farmer livelihoods—set it apart. 

By eliminating financial and technical barriers, the program aims to foster regenerative farming practices, promoting a sustainable grain production model. 

Heineken’s commitment extends beyond Europe, reflecting a broader strategy to enhance sustainability across its supply chain. 

Earlier, Heineken announced a £39 million (US$42.49M) investment to refurbish hundreds of sites across the UK and reopen 62 pubs that had closed in recent years. 

The Star Pubs & Bars chain investment is expected to create over 1,000 new jobs. This move comes as the UK pub industry seeks to recover from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent economic pressures.  

Star Pubs & Bars currently operates 2,400 pubs, down from 2,700 in 2019, and plans to renovate over 600 locations to better serve customers who have reduced city center commutes. 

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