Digital solutions of the future to boost responsibility and transparency in the food supply chain

The new HKScan-led partnership network aims to create operating models that will strengthen the responsibility and transparency of the food supply chain through digitalisation. The network combines the participants’ extensive research and business expertise. Responsibility data of the food supply chain will open up significant development and business opportunities for Finland.

At its best, the food chain of the future will create new business benefits, as consumers, customers and investors, for example, demand data-driven transparency and traceability from primary production to retail. The new partnership network of the Finnish stakeholders will bring the responsibility data of the food chain accessible to all. In addition to HKScan, the network includes top experts from Biolan, the Finnish Meteorological Institute, the Natural Resources Institute and Mtech Digital Solutions.

“HKScan’s goal is a carbon-neutral food chain by 2040 and we are committed to the international Science Based Targets (SBT) initiative. The cooperation launched with the new partnership network is a significant step forward in our responsibility work. We are moving from carbon footprint calculation to digital handprint calculation, where we can take into account carbon sequestration in primary production, for example. This will open up new opportunities for us to advance our ambitious climate plan,” says Ulf Jahnsson, HKScan’s Vice President, Sustainable primary production.

Food production of the future

“Finland has the potential to be the first country in the world to have a fully transparent, safe and responsible food chain. The joint project From Footprints to Digital Handprints, coordinated by HKScan, aims to create, together with partners, a common data-driven platform for the entire food chain. The platform will enable companies to develop their own services and business models,” says Head of Food Program, Food from Finland Esa Wrang at Business Finland.

The partnership network brings together internationally recognised scientific expertise from the Finnish Meteorological Institute and the Natural Resources Institute (Luke). The Finnish Meteorological Institute’s research project addresses the challenges of determining and verifying carbon and greenhouse balances in field farming. Luke’s extensive research portfolio produces environmental impact models that benefit the entire food chain. The models make use of the chain’s own data.

Biolan has strong circular economy expertise which is utilised not only domestically but also in export markets. The company has a long history of cooperation with HKScan’s contract farmers, for example in the utilisation of manure nutrients. Biolan’s new solutions, together with its local and domestic presence, will also increase the security of food supply.

Promoting climate-neutral food production based on responsibility data requires an effective information architecture. In its own project, Mtech is developing digital solutions that are rapidly growing in importance as key success factors for the future food chain.