At Sustenuto, we aim to be long-term partners for our customers, supporting them at every step of their sustainability journey. As part of this commitment, we act as interim sustainability managers where needed.

In 2020, Sustenuto colleague Melvin Laurent was the interim sustainability manager for Vandemoortele. For six months, he took over the operational tasks from the Group Sustainability Manager. During that time, Sustenuto also supported the development of the company’s new sustainability strategy.

The challenge

Vandemoortele is a Belgian family business active in food production. It is the European market leader in two core businesses: one being bakery products, and the other being margarines, culinary oils & fats.

Sustenuto started working with Vandemoortele in 2015. We coached the development of their sustainability strategy, setting ambitious targets towards 2020.

When 2020 came, we revisited the strategy. The five years in between marked a continuous improvement by Vandemoortele in terms of sustainability implementation. Thanks to this growth, we could develop a vision towards 2025 with even more ambitious goals.

On top of strategy development, we regularly supported Vandemoortele’s management with, among others, stakeholder consultations on sustainability topics and sustainability reporting.

When the Group Sustainability Manager, Aurélie Comhaire, went on parental leave, Vandemoortele asked Sustenuto to cover her position.

Our approach

Interim sustainability management

Our sustainability coach Melvin started working at Vandemoortele’s head office three days per week, taking on the task to coordinate, support and continue the implementation of the sustainability action plans.

More specific tasks included:

  • Collecting data for the biannual reporting to the Executive Committee.
  • Maintaining the sustainable palm oil reporting monthly as a requirement from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)
  • Coordinating the annual audit of the RSPO with the support of different Vandemoortele colleagues.
  • Developing the sustainability report by collecting the data of the whole year and coordinating external partners as well as project owners from different departments.

Sustenuto combined the in-house function with coaching support by our managing director, Dirk Le Roy. Where Melvin took on the operational management tasks, Dirk governed the entire process and used his expertise to help solve more challenging and strategic questions.

Complementing an interim position with coaching support ensures continuity and efficiency.

This proved a winning combination. It not only safeguarded the continuity of the sustainability projects at the Group level, but also strengthened them, while ensuring cost efficiency for Vandemoortele.

Supporting a new sustainability strategy

Additionally, Sustenuto supported Vandemoortele in developing its new sustainability strategy towards 2025.

The result is Shaping a tasty future sustainably. With this new sustainability strategy, Vandemoortele commits to balanced nutrition while protecting nature and enhancing lives.

The results

Interim positions are successful if there is a real, collaborative partnership. At Sustenuto, we aim to stand beside our customers in every step of their sustainability journey.

“It was reassuring knowing that Sustenuto would take care of the operational tasks during my parental leave and start preparing the new sustainability strategy exercise by performing a benchmark and desk research. Once I was back, we could directly start with the internal thematic workshops and stakeholder consultation to draft the new sustainability strategy.”

Aurélie Comhaire, Group Sustainability Manager

Melvin: “During my time at Vandemoortele, there was a very good understanding between Sustenuto and the management. Expectations were high, but there was room for dialogue and initiative. Thanks to this trust, we could ensure the continuity of Aurelie’s work and support a strong sustainability strategy towards 2025.”