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GRI 204


Looking at the origin of products has become a matter of course for many consumers. In particular, the regional origin of products is important to many customers. A regional product range strengthens farmers and businesses from the surrounding area – and consequently also the immediate environment of consumers. At the same time, short transport routes and seasonality can ensure a smaller environmental footprint. The current materiality analysis of the REWE Group has shown that the relevance of these topics increased again in 2020, which was impacted by the corona pandemic (for more information, see Materiality Analysis).

GRI 204: Procurement practices

Management approach


Due to its origin as a cooperative, the REWE Group is deeply rooted in all regions in which the company operates through its stores. As a reliable partner, the company maintains relationships with local farmers that are on equal terms. The focus here is particularly on the protection, preservation and support of local structures.


With the REWE Local Partnership code of conduct, the REWE Group is declaring its commitment to its local responsibility and creating the conditions to promote local business. In this codex, REWE has worked with local suppliers and producers to define common values and principles in order to strengthen sustainable and fair cooperation and create added value in a sustainable manner, whether this be through short delivery routes, value creation in rural areas, or greater protection for animals or the environment. The code of conduct is binding and includes an independent ombudsman for the direct contractual relationships between REWE independent retailers and agricultural producers in Germany (see For a Balanced Cooperation with Local Suppliers at REWE).


The REWE Group wants to promote fair dealings with partners and suppliers as well as more sustainable product ranges through the expansion of regional products. In addition, the aim is to strengthen local value creation.


The REWE Group is implementing its commitment to regionality through a continuous expansion of regional product ranges and clear labelling for regional products. Since 2010, the company has been using “locality officers” in the regions to create a structure for this in order to help smaller suppliers with certification processes and facilitate listing at REWE stores (see Locality). In addition, the company holds regular discussions with representatives of agriculture.

Supporting local farmers

The REWE Group is aware of its special responsibility towards agriculture in Germany and makes allowances for it with a series of long-term measures. The company is in close communication with farmers and works with them to develop ideas and measures to support agricultural structures, preserve biodiversity or bring agricultural products to market. In addition, the REWE Group is in constant exchange with various agriculture interest groups, from individual farmers to organised associations and alliances. It is important to the company to support local agriculture, strengthen it over the long term, and offer reliable, safe prospects.

“5D” Commitment

The collapse of the export market to Asia as a result of African swine fever and closed sales channels due to the measures taken to combat the corona pandemic have led to low producer prices in the German pigmeat sector. For this reason, the REWE Group pledged a guaranteed minimum price (pre-crisis level) to pig farmers at the end of 2020. In addition, the REWE and PENNY sales lines in Germany are ensuring that around 95 per cent of their conventional fresh pork product range is of German origin until summer 2022. By doing so, the REWE Group is giving pig farmers planning security and, with its commitment to the “5D” rule for pork (birth, rearing, fattening, slaughtering and disassembly/processing in Germany), it is sending an important signal of its support for local agriculture.

GRI 204-1

Proportion of spending on local suppliers

For the REWE Group, regional suppliers are those who produce an end product locally using raw materials from a specifically defined region and only sell it there. The regional product ranges have a high proportion of fresh fruit and vegetable products, which are offered in the stores depending on the season. To consumers, they represent freshness, short transport routes, trustworthy production and support of local economies.

The REWE Group has expanded its regional product ranges significantly in recent years. The basis for this is long-term relationships with suppliers in the region as well as transparent and attention-grabbing communication of the special advantages of these products to consumers – via the REWE regionality campaign, for example.

Introduced in 2012, the Germany-wide brand REWE Regional for regional products ensures quick recognition. The region of origin is printed on the package – as a politically demarcated area (e.g. German state), cultural area (e.g. Franconia) or traditional growing area (e.g. “Altes Land”). Examples include sausage and eggs from North Rhine-Westphalia, apples from “Altes Land” or cucumbers from the Spreewald. The regional product range has developed positively during the reporting period.

REWE Regional (Germany)1

2019 2020 2021
REWE stores that sell REWE Regional products3 3,729 3,845 3,880
Customer contacts2 128,825,717 158,780,375 159,819,620
Number of products3 747 804 842
The values deviate from those in the 2019 sustainability report because scanner data for REWE Dortmund has been taken into consideration since the 2020 financial year.
Customer contacts are based on scan totals for individual products.
Applies only to products of which more than 200 items were sold.

Labelling regional products

As another way of promoting regional products, the REWE Group became a charter member of the supporting association Regionalfenster e.V. (Regional Window) in 2012 and has been implementing the group’s regional window concept for selected products in PENNY and REWE stores since 2014. The label provides consumers with verified information about the origin of ingredients and the preparation location. In this manner, the regional window creates transparency for customers that complements private-label-specific information. These products include regional plants such as herbaceous perennials or Nordmann firs as well as apples, carrots, asparagus or tomatoes, which often come from one or more suppliers per region.

REWE labels products with the regional window if they are only offered in the stores of the region from which they also originate. It is used for REWE Regional products to verify the regional origin in a neutral manner and to show this transparently.

PENNY labels products with the regional window if these are available seasonably from Germany. At PENNY, as an additional indication of origin, regional fruit and vegetables are identified by the German state or the agricultural or “pleasure region” such as, for example, “from the German region of Lake Constance”. This transparency regarding the indications of origin is part of the regional commitment with which PENNY also commits to freshness through short transport routes and to promoting local producers.

Number of regional window products and product groups registered at REWE and PENNY (Germany)1

2019 2020 2021
REWE 721 802 879
PENNY 364 577 650
GRI 102-48: In this section, the number of products was standardised both at REWE and PENNY and recorded according to registered products, no longer according to products subject to license fees. The previous year’s figures have been adjusted accordingly.

A further regional concept has been implemented since 2014 at the REWE Group in Austria at the stores of BILLA, BILLA PLUS and Sutterlüty, under the name “Da komm’ ich her” (“I come from here”). The private label product range comprises seasonal and regional fresh fruit and vegetables as well as eggs and now includes 200 products.

Regional concept “Da komm’ ich her”1 (Austria)

2019 2020 2021
Customer contacts2 84,261,000 93,803,000 94,880,000
Number of products 261 226 200
BILLA, BILLA PLUS and Sutterlüty in Austria.
Customer contacts are based on scan totals for individual products.

Under the PENNY private label “Ich bin Österreich” (“I am Austria”), products that are made according to typical Austrian recipes and only with Austrian ingredients are sold. At the end of 2021, the product range included some 200 products. In total, “Ich bin Österreich” products generated over 107 million customer contacts in 2021.


When talking about locality, the products originate from suppliers who are usually small or direct sellers of agricultural products who supply a regionally limited number of stores directly. Local products are usually marketed in REWE stores under the umbrella brand “Aus deiner Region” (“From Your Region”) and are placed in stores and labelled accordingly. To further boost the number of products produced locally, REWE has appointed “locality officers” and thus created a structure which only deals with the local needs of customers and suppliers. These officers establish contacts between REWE stores and local producers and suppliers and accompany the products of local farmers along the entire journey, from the field to the supermarket shelf. For example, they organise locality conferences where suppliers can present their products. There were a total of 25 locality officers in the six REWE regions during the reporting period. One successful example of the promotion of local suppliers is the REWE “Landmarkt” (country store) concept in the Region “Mitte”. Farmers in the organisation Vereinigung der Hessischen Direktvermarkter e.V. (VHD) sell their products under this name throughout the state. At the end of 2021, 324 stores were selling the more than 2,900 Landmarkt products.

Landmarkt, Hesse (Germany)

2019 2020 2021
Stores which sell Landmarkt products 310 312 324
Customer contacts1 9,960,520 9,990,460 11,154,860
Number of products2 over 3,200 over 3,200 over 2,900
Customer contacts are based on scan totals for individual products.
Products on sale on the basis of product number (NAN), starting in market entry year.

REWE independent retailers also maintain some very long-term partnerships with local suppliers and farmers. In addition, some retailers have created their own regional product ranges. In the REWE Richrath stores in the Cologne area, consumers find a large number of products that bear the label “Wir aus der Region” (“We from the Region”).

For a balanced cooperation with local suppliers at REWE

To strengthen sustainable and fair cooperation with local farmers in the long term, the REWE sales line has defined shared values and principles with several thousand local suppliers and producers and anchored these in the “REWE Local Partnership”. With its REWE local partnerships, the REWE Group is supporting and promoting the protection and preservation of regional and local producers, particularly in the areas of fruit and vegetables, dairy, meat and sausage. The document presents four subject areas which the sales line uses as a basis for cooperation with local suppliers:

  • Reliable contract partner
  • Good money for good work
  • Use of shared networks
  • Shared innovations – to protect animals and the environment

With this document, REWE is declaring its commitment to its local responsibility and offering reliable guidance for cooperation with small and medium-sized farmers and producers in the direct environment of the stores. REWE local partnerships with small and medium-sized local producers and farmers are continuously being expanded. In terms of the practical implementation, REWE relies on the cooperation between “locality officers” and the retailers and store managers see (Locality). Together, they provide their local suppliers with a wide range of tools and support in order to use synergies and grow together in close, trusting cooperation.