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The world´s first climate-positive burgers to be launchedSweden 6/6/2018 6:00 AM (Updated 1/8/2020 2:30 PM)
-and a new website inspires more companies to become climate-positive
Swedish MAX Burgers (MAX) may not be well-known outside of their growing collection of restaurants across Europe and the Middle East, but has found a way to create a menu for their 130 restaurants that actually removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. During the Sustainable Brands conference in Vancouver, on June 5th, MAX officially launches their climate-positive burgers and as of June 14th, every single bite of a MAX burger will actually help fight climate change.
“The reasoning behind the launch of climate-positive burgers is simple: climate change on our planet is out of control, and we need to stabilize it,” says Richard Bergfors, CEO of MAX Burgers. “To meet the two-degree climate goal set out in the Paris Agreement, the world needs to work harder at cutting emissions and start the work of clearing greenhouse gases that have already been emitted into the atmosphere. Just going carbon-neutral is not enough anymore. We know that we are part of the problem and together with our guests, we can now be part of the solution,” said Bergfors.
With the climate-positive burgers, MAX removes some of the carbon dioxide that has already been emitted into the atmosphere. They do this by planting trees which absorb more carbon from the atmosphere than their products’ total emissions. The net results are positive. To achieve a climate-positive burger, MAX Burgers:
1. Measures their product emissions, including all emissions from the farmer’s land to the guest’s hand, including guests’ and employees’ travel to and from their restaurants and handling of waste generated from each meal;
2. Works hard to reduce emissions and add new approaches to continue to make reductions in their process and products; and,
3. Captures the equivalent of at least 110 % of emissions by planting trees. That means they go beyond the world’s only independent standard for carbon neutrality - ISO 14021.
“We’ve realized that the best thing we can do to reduce our emissions is to make sure that our green burgers taste at least as good as our meat burgers, at the same time as we launch a climate-positive menu,” said Bergfors. “We hope that we can inspire other companies to launch climate-positive products and services. We’re convinced that our guests and other consumers prefer companies that take responsibility for the environment and the future. That’s also why we just started clipop.org, a website where consumers can find climate-positive products and services,” said Bergfors.
MAX and MEVO, a New Zealand car-sharing company with a climate-positive car pool service, launch Clipop.org (Climate Positive Products) to help and encourage more companies to join the climate-positive movement by 2022.
MAX was founded in Sweden, above the Arctic Circle, in 1968, and is the oldest burger chain in Sweden. The family-run business was named one of the world’s Ten Most Innovative Companies in Food, 2011 by Fast Company. It drew a lot of international publicity when they as the first fast food chain in the world carbon labelled the entire menu in 2008. Hence, they have a history of being progressive when it comes to sustainability. With the launch of climate-positive burgers, they are taking another bold step forward.
"Ten years ago we started climate compensation with tree planting in Africa," says Curt Bergfors, MAX founder and working chairman of the board. It feels great to raise the bar further and become climate positive on our 50th anniversary on June 14th. MAX is a family business and will be for many generations to come and our planet must be a place we can continue living on. “
KEY FACTS ABOUT MAX
MAX is one of Sweden’s greenest brands. A few highlights connected to climate change:
- Was founded in 1968 by Curt Bergfors and Britta Andersson and is a family-run business. Today, MAX employs 5,400 people, with 130 restaurants in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Poland and Egypt.
- Total turnover in 2017 was € 328 million.
- MAX has offset their greenhouse gas emissions since 2008. To date 1.5 million trees have been planted in Africa.
- Since 2008 the company only use electricity from wind power plants in Sweden.
- In 2016, they quintupled their range of Green Family burgers, a collection of vegan and Lacto-ovo vegetarian burgers with a much smaller carbon footprint than a beef burger. The sales of Green-Family meals have increased by 900 % over the last two years. As a result, MAX’s total climate impact has been reduced by 13 % per earned dollar over the last two years.
- MAX’s goal is for every second meal sold in their restaurants to consist of something other than beef by 2022. If that goal is reached, it will likely have led to a 30 percent reduction in emissions in just seven years. MAX celebrates their 50th birthday on June 14, 2018.
- It is the greenest burger brand in Sweden by far according to industry benchmarks.
- MAX outperforms McDonald’s and Burger King in Sweden both in preference and profitability.
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