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PANUPS: Swiss Airline Goes Organic

                         P A N U P S
                   Pesticide Action Network 
                        North America
                       Updates Service
                   EMAIL: panna@panna.org

August 15, 1997

Swiss Airline Switches to Organic Food

In June 1997, Swissair announced that it was introducing 
organically grown products in all classes of its inflight 
catering on flights departing from Switzerland. The airline 
stated that within three years organic products should be 
available on Swissair's entire flight schedule. By the year 
2000, Swissair's goal is to ensure that 90% of the products 
they use to prepare meals are organically grown. While use of 
organic products will increase costs, the airline maintains 
that these increases will be compensated for in ways that are 
"imperceptible to customers."

In a press release, Swissair stated: "The trend towards 
organically grown foods is increasing across the globe. 
Swissair sees this as a chance to contribute to the health 
and well-being of its passengers." "Bio Suisse," the 
association of Swiss organic farmers and the Swiss consumer 
protection association have worked together with Swissair on 
this project. 

Swissair recently surveyed their frequent flyers and found 
that passengers want meals that are fresh, easy to digest, 
presented in a pleasing fashion, and that use natural 
products as much as possible without lessening variety or 

In addition to using organically grown ingredients to produce 
inflight meals, Swissair is also taking seasonal shifts into 
consideration when making food purchases and is offering 
vegetarian meals as an alternative in all classes of service. 
Passengers will also be able to order organically grown-and-
produced wine, beer and fruit and vegetable juices. Coffee 
will be purchased in cooperation with the Max Havelaar 
Foundation, a fair trade organization, to ensure that growers 
receive a fair price. The airline will also provide 
organically grown baby food.

According to the press release, purchasing relatively large 
amounts of organically grown foods poses a challenge for 
Swissair. The airline's caterers must develop a new, 
international network of suppliers, and menu planning must be 
completely redefined and reorganized. Swissair estimates that 
it will take at least three years before organic products 
have been completely introduced throughout the airline's 
services. In the initial phase, breakfasts and hot meals will 
have 68% of the ingredients organically grown, a further 23% 
will be from farms using integrated pest management.

Source: Swissair press release, June 3, 1997.
Contact: PANNA.

Swiss Pesticide Market Declines

Sales of agrochemicals in Switzerland dropped to US$104 
million in 1996, down 2% from 1995 sales figures. Volume of 
sales also decreased -- falling more than 4% to 1,748 tons of 
active ingredients. Since 1988, the volume of active 
ingredients sold has fallen by 29%. Crops showing the 
greatest drop in pesticide use over 1995 figures were maize 
(-8%), potatoes (-8%), and oilseed rape (-6%). Agrochemical 
use in orchards and vineyards, however, showed a slight 

Source: Agrow: World Crop Protection News, July 11, 1997.
Contact: PANNA.

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