Organic at Danone, now and in the future

Organic refers to production or farming methods that do away with chemical fertilizers, pesticides or any others artificial chemicals. This mode of production is characterized by a harmonious relationship between elements of a whole system. Organic agriculture is a production system that sustains the health of soils, ecosystems and people, thus perfectly echoing our ‘One Planet. One Health’ vision. It relies on ecological processes, biodiversity and cycles adapted to local conditions rather than the use of inputs with adverse effects. Organic agriculture combines tradition, innovation and science to benefit the shared environment.

Why do people buy organic?

Driven by families and millennials, two demographics with great concern for the origin of their food and beverages, demand for and curiosity about organic is growing at a rapid pace around the world.

When asked what the reasons behind their choice of organic consumption are, most will cite arguments linked to either their own health or the planet’s. In fact, organic, being free from artificial chemicals, is considered safer, with many even linking organic food to a better taste. Moreover, the production methods of organic are considered better for the environment and all in all more ethical. Nevertheless, a few remain skeptical regarding the true benefit of organic consumption, seeing it wrongly as an excuse for companies and brands to charge higher prices for their products.

What is the conversation around organic?

Many of the conversations about organic center around it being a seal of quality, safety, and ethical production, with conversation tones being very positive. In terms of subject matter, conversations are shifting from a concern with additives and preservatives to a concern with impact, ethics, origin identification, and local production.

While wrongly associated with vegetarianism or veganism, organic is of great interest to consumers leading such lifestyles. Another segment where organic is booming is baby food.

What does organic in our Essential Dairy and Plant-based category look like?

Our journey to meet growing consumer preferences for more natural and organic products started with 'Les 2 Vaches' 12 years ago. The milk used in the brand's products have also recently received the Fair for Life certification. Our main brands, such as Danone, Activia, and Danonino have jumped on board, and we are paced to provide even more organic ranges with brands like Alpro and Provamel in the coming year.  

Read more about Les 2 Vaches and the masterminds behind it here.

What does organic in our Waters category look like?

The development of new organic offers appeared more than a year ago, and it was the perfect timing because consumers were seeking healthy hydration and retailers were expected to offer organic alternatives

And this movement started at the Research & Innovation level, where developing organic products was not managed the same way. Instead of just transforming the conventional product to an organic one, our Research & Innovation teams challenged themselves to bring added advantages to the consumers (less sugar, new taste experiences, etc.) and to use more qualitative ingredients (for instance, Volvic infusion bio).

Today, seven organic ranges were developed by Volvic and evian, and it’s only the beginning.

What does organic in our Early Life Nutrition category look like?

Les Récoltes Bio, Blédina’s organic range, was launched in 2018 with different products (fruit & vegetable purées, biscuits, etc.). Parents give great importance to local sourcing for organic food because it’s a proof of quality, of respecting the planet and of the sustainability of local economy. That is why Blédina uses a maximum of French ingredients and is committed to reach 80% of French sourcing in its range by 2020. Les Récoltes Bio is already the favorite organic brand in the market and the commitment to French sourcing is the number one reason that consumers buy the products.

In the U.S., Happy Family Organics is the leading brand of organic baby food. A truly millennial brand, Happy Family offers a unique direct-to-consumer ‘Happy Bundle’ that parents order online, which contains a diverse product assortment tailored for their little ones’ needs.

Find out more about our vision for regenerative agriculture here.

Find out more about how we work with farmers transitioning to organic production here.