[VANCOUVER, CANADA -- Max Burgers (MAX) may not be well-known outside of Sweden or its’ growing collection of restaurants in Europe and the Middle East, but it has found a way to create a menu for their 130 restaurants that actually removes carbon dioxides from the atmosphere. On June 5th, at the Sustainable Brands event in Vancouver, Canada, MAX officially launches their climate positive burgers. From June 14th every single bite of a MAX burger helps our climate. [Link to news release.]
To meet the 2-degree climate goal of The Paris Agreement, the world needs to both work harder at cutting emissions and to start to remove some of the greenhouse gases that have already been emitted to the atmosphere. Going neutral is not enough anymore.
With Climate Positive Burgers MAX hopes to inspire more companies to follow suit. The dream is that one day we will be able to buy climate positive cars, computers and clothes.
MAX was founded in 1968 in Sweden, above the Arctic Circle. This family-run business is the oldest burger chain in Europe and is more profitable than McDonald’s and Burger King in Sweden. MAX was named one of the world’s 10 most innovative Companies in Food 2011 by Fast Company and their Carbon labeling of the menu in 2008 met a lot of international publicity. By introducing climate positive burgers they take a new bold step.
With climate positive burgers they remove some of the carbon dioxides that have already been emitted to the atmosphere is reduced. MAX makes this possible by planting trees that absorb more carbon than their products total emissions. The results are net positive. The process looks like this:
1. The company measures 100% of its product emissions, including all emissions from the farmer's hand to their guest’s hand, including travel to and from their restaurants and waste generated from a meal.
2. They work hard to reduce emissions and add new approaches to continue to make reductions in their process and products.
3. Finally, they capture at least 110% of emissions by planting trees. That means they go beyond the world’s only independent standard for carbon neutrality – ISO 140021.
MAX is one of Sweden’s greenest brands. A few highlights connected to climate change:
- In 2008, MAX was the first restaurant in the world to introduced carbon foot-printing on the menu so guests can make informed decisions.
- They have offset their greenhouse gas emissions since 2008. Today 1,5 million trees have been planted in Africa. With climate-positive burgers, tree plantations are expanded.
- That same year, 100 percent of used electricity by MAX restaurants in Sweden was wind-generated.
- In 2016, they quintupled their range of Green Family burgers, a collection of vegan and Lacto-ovo vegetarian burgers with a much smaller carbon footprint than a beef burger. The sales of green-family meals have increased by 900% the last two years (from 2 to 18 % of sales). As a result, MAX total climate impact has been reduced by 13 % per earned dollar the last two years.
- MAX goals are that during 2022 every second sold meal should be made by something else than beef. If that goal is reached, it will have probably have reduced their emissions by 30 percent in just seven years.
To help share their story and encourage other companies to create climate positive products, MAX created CLIPOP.org to help people find more climate positive products (CLIPOP).
MAX is launching their climate positive menu on June 5, and brothers Richard (President) and Christoffer (Vice President) Bergfors and their father Curt Bergfors, founder and chairman of the board, want other companies to join them in this effort.
“The 14th of June, MAX turns 50. We feel the best thing we can do to honor our past is to secure the future. Not just our own, but the whole worlds. Our world’s climate is out of control and we need to work together to stabilize it. So, on our birthday, we’re launching something we hope the whole world can celebrate – the first ever climate positive burger. From now on, every single bite of a MAX burger helps the climate.” Richard Bergfors, President, MAX.
“We can no longer reach the Paris climate change goal to limit global temperatures rise to 2°C by 2100 just by reducing emissions. To achieve this we also need to remove some of the carbon dioxide already emitted into the atmosphere. With our climate positive burgers, we hope to inspire others to change the story of climate change. If a small burger chain from Sweden can do it most companies can.” Kaj Török, Chief Sustainability Officer, MAX.
“If you are a part of the problem, you need to be a part of the solution," says Richard Bergfors.
“MAX mission is to make the world a little better. We do it by serving the best tasting burgers and by being a good force in society and for the world.” Richard Bergfors
KEY FACTS ABOUT MAX.
- Est. 1968 by Curt Bergfors and Britta Andersson and remains a family run business.
- Celebrates 50 years, June 14, 2018.
- Sweden’s by far greenest burger brand according to industry benchmarks.
- Was the first restaurant in the world to put climate on the menu (2008).
- The most profitable restaurant chain in Sweden, outperforming McDonald’s and Burger King in Sweden on preference and profitability.
- Employing 5 000 people, with 130 restaurants in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Poland, Egypt and the UAE (131 restaurants in May, 134 restaurants by the end of June)