NL Embassy in Romania celebrates "Heroes of Sustainability" on King's Day 2024

The Kingdom of the Netherlands is one of the top investors in Romania's economy, with a diverse range of companies, from start-ups to multinational corporations, in various sectors. Sustainability, the circular economy and reducing waste or carbon footprint are core values adopted by many Dutch companies. In the run-up to this year's King's Day, the Embassy set out to find out who the "Heroes of Sustainability" are.

Sustainability, both in a business and public policy context, aims to prevent resource depletion so that resources are available for humanity in the longest possible term. To this end, in the UN, almost all countries in the world have come together and defined these Sustainable Development Goals.

In the run-up to this year's King's Day, the national day of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Embassy set out to find out who the "Heroes of Sustainability" are and invited Dutch companies operating in Romania to reveal innovative initiatives that contribute to healthy economic development and improve everyday life.

Sustainability is not a fad

„There is a growing sense of concern and responsibility for the world around us. Sustainability is not a fad, it reflects the development of our culture. It is a mark of the times. That's why the Dutch Government has set up an international programme to contribute to clean, safe and sufficient water for 20 million people in 40 catchment areas by 2030. Romania is one of the countries we are partnering with to strengthen the process of good management of this precious resource - water.

We, in the Netherlands, believe that global challenges can only be solved together and that doing good and doing business, go hand in hand for people, planet and prosperity. Responsibility for implementing sustainability lies with both the public and private sectors. Unless companies make sustainability an integral part of their business, we cannot achieve our global policy goals.

The eight "Heroes of Sustainability"

We are therefore, pleased that today we can see some examples of Dutch companies working to make the world a little better. We encourage each and every one of you to be a sustainability hero'', said Her Excellency Ambassador Willemijn van Haaften at the recent King's Day reception organised by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Romania.

These are the eight " Heroes of Sustainability": Zeelandia, Printmasters, NN, ING, Heineke, FBAR, Mazars, Dentons. Below is a summary of a couple of their projects:

  • Zeelandia: Following an investment of 180,000 euros, 486 solar panels were installed on the roof of the factory in Iasi county. By harnessing solar energy, the company will reduce its carbon footprint by 81 tonnes of CO2 each year. Zeelandia Romania is part of the Koninklijke Zeelandia group, founded in 1900 by the Dutch Doeleman family. The Zeelandia Group has become a global player in bakery, confectionery and pastry ingredients.
  • Heineken: Through its sustainability strategy "Brew a Better World 2030", the company has ensured that 100% of the electricity used comes from renewable sources, continuously invests in equipment replacement to achieve Net Zero, and more than 70% of its main raw materials are sourced locally.
Federation of National Food Banks
  • FBAR: Federation of Food Banks in Romania and the nine Regional Food Banks in Bucharest, Cluj, Romanian, Brasov, Oradea, Timisoara, Constanta, Craiova, Galati collect and donate food to 714 partner organisations, preventing food waste and supporting vulnerable communities. In almost 8 years of activity, 39,588,817 portions have been donated. More than 240,000 vulnerable people have been fed: children in day centres, homeless people, elderly people in care homes or poor families.

The aim of the initiative of ‘Sustainable Heroes’ is to spread sustainable practices, to inspire and to learn from each other, and build, brick by brick, a more extensive network and society of sustainable businesses in Romania. Regardless of scale every effort is significant in the journey together towards a more sustainable future.