UK-  Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company (CMBC) has partnered with the Archer-Daniels-Midland Company (ADM) to contract the first 23 farmers to grow an estimated 7,000 metric tons of regenerative barley this year.

Carlsberg Group is collaborating with three brands in the UK, Finland, and France as part of the group’s new Zero Farming Footprint strategy within its recently launched ESG program, Together Towards Zero and Beyond. 

According to Carlsberg, the company will be sourcing 30% of all agricultural raw materials from regenerative practices and sustainable sources globally by 2030, reaching 100% by 2040. 

In the UK, Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company has committed to 100% regenerative barley for Carlsberg Danish Pilsner by 2027 and for all UK brands by 2031.

Carlsberg has also brought on board agriculture consultancy Ceres Rural to develop a regenerative agricultural protocol to align with Group practices while considering the specific requirements and contexts for UK farmers.

This project is further evidence of how we work with farmers… to expand regenerative agriculture as part of our collective endeavor to reduce carbon and make our food system more sustainable,” says Jonathan Lane, managing director of ADM, UK. 

ADM has years of experience supporting farmers in their transition to regenerative agriculture.

Agriculture systems vary largely across the world due to climate, soil type, crops grown, scale, and technology- therefore, adapting the approach across markets is essential for success,” says Alice Andrews, associate partner at Ceres Rural. 

This move is the first step towards ensuring a transition toward 100% regenerative barley in the UK, Finland, and France.

According to Carlsberg, the company will be sourcing 30% of all agricultural raw materials from regenerative practices and sustainable sources globally by 2030, reaching 100% by 2040. 

We collaborate closely with local farmers, traders, maltsters, agronomists, and NGOs who provide expertise in the transition to regeneratively grown barley, ” Simon Boas Hoffmeyer, senior director of sustainability and ESG for Carlsberg Group, says. 

Collaboration with Baltic Sea Action Group in Finland 

In Finland, partner farmers supply regenerative barley to Sinebrychoff, a Carlsberg Group company, for its annual KOFF Christmas Beer, while actively promoting regenerative farming among Finnish barley farmers.

Carlsberg brought on the Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG) as the company’s “matchmaker” between regenerative farmers, and scientists, through its Carbon Action platform, resulting in Finland’s oldest and most popular Christmas beer brewed with malted barley from two regenerative farms in 2022.

Our farm is one of a hundred Carbon Action farms in Finland. Farmers and researchers share their experiences and know-how on regenerative farming on the Carbon Action platform,” explains Sirkku Puumala, a Finnish farmer supplying regenerative barley for KOFF Christmas Beer.

Regenerative agriculture is integral to the fight against climate change and biodiversity loss, and changing farmers’ mindsets to consider longer-term soil health before yield is one of the challenges Carlsberg flagged in Finland. 

This, coupled with the current lack of universal standards on regenerative agriculture, means that stakeholders who help to facilitate the transition are invaluable,” the group stated.

Collaborating with Invivo Group in France 

Meanwhile, in France, partnering with Malteries Soufflet and Soufflet Agriculture of InVivo Group, Carlsberg’s Kronenbourg brand already now has 45 partner farmers supplying traceable “Responsible Barley.” 

The 1664 brand plans to use 100% responsible barley in its Blonde brews by 2026,  with 250 partner farmers producing 5,000 hectares of responsibly sourced barley that is traceable using blockchain technology.

Carlsberg Group is a new member of the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform (SAI Platform) – created to promote and support the worldwide development of sustainable agriculture. 

In this working group, Carlsberg will learn and share best practices with experts and other industry players, to co-develop and apply for specialized programs, and align on a common approach to regenerative agriculture.

For all the latest grains industry news from Africa, the Middle East and the World, subscribe to our weekly NEWSLETTERS, follow us on LinkedIn and subscribe to our YouTube channel.