CHICAGO – FarmLogix, a leading provider of local and sustainable food technology solutions to institutional customers, today announces the launch of Open Fields, a trailblazing software platform that allows food service operations at colleges, schools, hospitals, sports and leisure facilities and businesses of all kinds to more easily source and report on sustainable ingredients and purchases.
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK), the largest U.S.-based food services provider, is the first partner to deploy Open Fields, having signed an exclusive agreement with FarmLogix through 2019 to utilize the ground-breaking platform.
“Open Fields helps a broad range of institutions in foodservice, healthcare, higher education, retail and hospitality to meet growing consumer demand for local and sustainable food,” says Linda Mallers, CEO and President of FarmLogix. “We are the first logistics–enabled platform to provide source and attribute transparency from the time of order through delivery within a B2B and B2B2C platform that allows the user to define what local and sustainable means to them, while knowing the source and quality of their food from time of order.”
“As a global company that serves 2 billion meals each year, our size and reach enable us to influence scalable change through sourcing practices,” said Scott Barnhart, Senior Vice President of Supply Chain Management at Aramark. “Open Fields will help Aramark increase our access to fresh, high quality, local produce and sustainably sourced products that also support the thousands of local communities we serve.”
Open Fields enables institutions to search, save and build programs based on custom definitions and purchasing needs. Convenient dashboards allow users to run custom analytics, while national entities such as Aramark, can run metrics on their own sustainability initiatives by location, product, spend, attribute, farm/vendor, miles to location and distributor. It is also the industry’s first reporting and analytics engine that allows onsite managers to generate reports on sustainable purchases at their individual client locations.
Aramark is using the tool to track sustainable attributes such as: Seafood Watch® Best Choice or Good Alternative, Fair Trade USA certified, USDA Organic and more. The platform provides the ability to search and report on locally sourced products and purchasing by unique customer definition, such as mile radius, state or state agricultural marketing programs.
How Open Fields Works:
The dashboards enable onsite managers and corporate teams to gain insight into a range of sustainability initiatives by tracking progress and generating reports. Highlights of recent activity include:
- 41 participating K-12 districts in the 2017-18 school year sourced an excess of 4 million pounds of produce, including kale, arugula and spring greens, supporting 75 US farms
- A major US university partner supports 15 local farms with access to detail on product, spend and distance from each farm to campus.
- 25 vendors supply No Antibiotics Ever (NAE) meat products to a wide variety of locations
- Clients have access to over 360+ unique Fair Trade certified products, reflecting nearly $11 million in purchases
- Purchases of cage free shell eggs, in alignment with Aramark’s commitment
- Compliance with third party sustainability reporting programs such as AASHE STARS, Real Food Challenge and Healthcare Without Harm
“Customer definitions of local and sustainable are as unique as fingerprints,” Mallers continues. “Meeting individualized customer needs poses enormous complexity for foodservice and broadline distribution. Our platform identifies products that meet those unique customer needs, creates sales opportunities for producers and distributors, and increases efficiency and transparency across the supply chain. We are excited that our partnership with Aramark, a company that has the ability to truly change a farmer or small business owner’s life, will bring full transparency and scale to local and sustainable purchasing. The impact their resulting purchasing power has will truly create meaningful industry change, and we are thrilled to be a part of it.”
Aramark has partnered with FarmLogix since 2012. The company will utilize Open Fields to design and customize programs that meet the company’s industry-leading sustainability and health and wellness commitments.
FarmLogix is leading the transformation of the local and sustainable food supply chain, connecting buyers to producers with proprietary technology and sustainability expertise that leverages existing supply chains and client IT platforms. FarmLogix was founded in 2012 and is based in Evanston, IL. For more information, please visit www.farmlogix.net.
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) proudly serves Fortune 500 companies, world champion sports teams, state-of-the-art healthcare providers, the world’s leading educational institutions, iconic destinations and cultural attractions, and numerous municipalities in 19 countries around the world. Our 270,000 team members deliver experiences that enrich and nourish millions of lives every day through innovative services in food, facilities management and uniforms. We operate our business with social responsibility, focusing on initiatives that support our diverse workforce, advance consumer health and wellness, protect our environment, and strengthen our communities. Aramark is recognized as one of the World’s Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE, as well as an employer of choice by the Human Rights Campaign and DiversityInc. Learn more at www.aramark.com or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.