By Boel Bengtsson and Michael Rothenborg
According to the United Nations, sustainable food production is an important milestone for reaching both economic growth and sustainable development, and responsible consumption and production is one of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
One visionary example of responsible production is underway in the small Swedish town of Ljusdal. The municipality board has allocated a six-acre site to sustainable fish farming and production, with Ramboll as business partner.
“The fish farm is part of a sustainable agriculture project where vegetables and fish nurture each other to together create a closed-loop system,” says Malcolm Sjödahl, Head of Business Development at Ramboll in Sweden. “When all phases are completed, it will be the first time Sweden has a sustainable food production of that size.”
Ramboll has been leading the project, together with Närljus (an economic foundation of the municipality of Ljusdal), since the beginning of 2016. The first phase will provide 20-30 new job opportunities in Ljusdal and potentially many more in the future.
“We have studied a number of municipalities and Ljusdal has very good potential and high competitiveness for these type of facilities,” says Malcolm Sjödahl.” In Ljusdal there is the drive to do this, and other important factors such as available land, water, energy and labour make it possible to establish a whole cluster.”
Representatives from the municipality are very satisfied with the project.
” We hope the investment now underway is followed by more,” says Lasse Molin, Mayor of Ljusdal. “There is more land and resources, so ongoing contacts with potential growers will intensify and be further developed. The municipality is very positive to be able to contribute to sustainable development and that new jobs can be created. Moreover, this development is in line with the food strategy adopted by the Swedish Parliament last year.”
Ramboll is also involved in other responsible food production projects, such as improving living conditions for the wild and very rare salmonid the houting around commercial fish farms in Denmark.
Responsible consumption and production is one of the four SDGs that are integrated in almost everything Ramboll does.