German confectioner Katjes Group is aiming to make its manufacturing sites carbon neutral this year.

The company is voluntarily offsetting its emissions in line with the targets of the Kyoto Protocol by sponsoring certified projects in India, Kenya, Rwanda and Peru, which “not only make a contribution to climate protection but also provide targeted support for sustainable development in their respective countries”.

Katjes has been on a path to becoming a more environmentally-friendly company for some time. Four years ago it became a vegetarian product manufacturer by removing animal gelatine from its sweets and its has established Katjesgreenfood, an investment fund which backs up and coming brands, many of them offering alternative food sources.

The carbon neutral plan is an extension of its earlier initiatives. By avoiding animal gelatine it has been able to reduce CO2 emissions for individual products by up to 20%, it said.

“Since 2012, the company has been working continuously on measures to reduce and avoid CO2, which include the use of modern refrigeration technology and electricity production in the company’s own combined heating and power plant,” it said.

“In the first four years after the start of the project alone, Katjes was able to reduce its CO2 footprint by 28%, also by converting to green electricity. By 2030, Katjes aims to halve the CO2 emissions that its production causes.”

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The confectionery manufacturer has also joined up with “Allianz für Entwicklung und Klima” [Alliance for Development and Climate]. This organisation is committed to implementing the global sustainability targets and the Paris Climate Agreement. 

Bastian Fassin, managing shareholder of Katjes and son of the company’s founder, said: “We see ourselves as pioneers with this step and wish to contribute to encouraging others to take up a similar commitment to climate protection.

“We mustn’t lose any more time in climate protection, which is why Katjes is working full out on additional measures. At the current point in time, support for selected projects represents a useful way of complementing our climate protection activities.”