One of the first products with a QR code is the Pirkka teriyaki tuna. The QR codes enable customers to access information on the origin, production facility and fishing methods of the products on K Group’s ‘Tracing our products’ website.
“We want to make choices easier for our customers at the store. With the codes, we can inform our customers of how the tuna has been caught and what species it is. We also provide information on how we monitor product quality and responsibility, who our suppliers are, and where the product has been made. We favour long-term partnerships with our suppliers: for example, the collaboration with the supplier of our Pirkka teriyaki tuna has lasted for more than 30 years,” says Tuuli Luoma, head of sales and own brands at K Group’s grocery trade division.
All canned Pirkka and K Menu tuna products will be equipped with QR codes before the end of the year as new product batches arrive at the stores.
Various measures to monitor sustainability in fishing
K Group works together with authorities, organisations and suppliers to promote sustainable fishing and the preservation of marine ecosystems. Legislation, fishing areas and quotas, certifications and audits are used to monitor the sustainability of fishing.
For 12 years, K Group’s seafood purchases have been guided by our fish and shellfish statement, which is updated annually based on the recommendations of WWF Finland’s seafood guide (in Finnish only).
“In accordance with our statement, the selections of Kesko, Kespro, K Group grocery stores and Kalatukku E. Eriksson do not include species that are on the red list of WWF’s guide. We only accept in our selections fish species whose fishing areas and methods of fishing do not harm fish stocks. When making decisions concerning selections, we favour sustainable fish stocks and MSC and ASC certified suppliers,” says Matti Kalervo, K Group’s Vice President of Corporate Responsibility.
K Group requires the manufacturers of its own brand food products to have international certifications that assure product safety.
K Group uses third-party amfori BSCI auditing to assure social responsibility in the factories of its tuna suppliers. The factory audits conducted every two years monitor, among other things, the safety of working conditions, employee compensation, working hours and that no child or forced labour is used.
“We disclose the latest audit dates of all our tuna suppliers on the ‘Tracing our products’ website,” says Kalervo.
Information on the origin of other products as well
K Group launched the ‘Tracing our products’ website in autumn 2020 in an effort to improve the transparency of its supply chains. The website provides information on from where and how products come to K Group stores.
In addition to all canned Pirkka and K-Menu tuna products, the website currently offers information on Pirkka Fairtrade roses and PROF Timber. Going forward, other products will be added to the website based on customer and stakeholder wishes.
Visit the ‘Tracing our products’ website.
Find out more about the Pirkka teriyaki tuna by scanning the QR code on the can or visiting the website (product-specific information is available in Finnish only).