Food & Sustainability Policy
At Molskroen, we strive to be a truly sustainable hotel and gourmet restaurant situated in the middle of nature, close to the sea and at the backdrop of the woodlands and agriculture.
A much important internal process for us is to update our food and sustainability policy in writing every year, communicating both our accomplishments and setting new detailed goals, this way making sure that the whole staff is a part of the process and that implementation to succeed is pre-planned.
2021 has been a year with great challenges due to covid-19. Nevertheless, we have been pushing further every day to become an even more sustainable company in all areas of our business.
As a result, Molskroen has been honoured with 2 rings in the Nordic 360eatguide 2021 and has received the Michelin Green Clover prize for our work with sustainable gastronomy - significant achievements due to constant focus and great effort by the entire Molskroen staff.
One of the areas in which we have achieved greater sustainability is our choice of workwear. In 2021 we changed all staff workwear and became brand ambassadors for the sustainable Upcy brand from the Danish supplier De Forenede Dampvaskerier (United Steam Laundries) - workwear which is made from old tablecloths and bed-linens. Read an interview with Head Chef Steffen Villadsen here: https://dfd.dk/paa-mols-kan-man-finde-firkloevere/
We have made progress towards our goal of becoming an organic animal feed supplier by providing local farmers with vegetable waste from our kitchen - this way waste isn't wasted. We have initiated collaboration with local biodynamic farmer Simon Kahr Jørgensen at Trustrupgaard.
Our pastry chef Luna Ladefoged is highly skilled with great focus on sustainability in the pastry section as to how we can improve our work with chocolate and vanilla in a more sustainable way. Here we have enforced our focus on fair trade, farming standards and social responsibilities. Luna’s was honoured last year with the Nordic prize ‘Young Chef Award 2021 ´ in the Nordic 360eatguide with the following of statement: "An up-and-coming talent with high ambitions and an open mind, who takes impression of her surroundings, both people and environment”.
In 2021 we decided to only use wild flowers during the high season and dried flowers off-season. This means, that we no longer use farmed flowers in the restaurant.
Regarding choice of beverages in the restaurant, we have switched many of the Carlsberg and Coca Cola products to local brands such as Ebeltoft Gårdbryggeri; a local, Danish producer.
The Molskroen Food & Sustainability Policy 2022
Advancement towards higher levels of sustainability is a heavy duty and a great focus for us. We have a dedicated team and a detailed plan, moving forward step by step.
Vision & work in progress
Local organic produce, sustainable fishing, animal welfare, cutting down food waste, sustainable interior and workwear, ‘greener cleaning’, social responsibility and staff wellbeing.
In this effort, we are at the same time determined to maintain our true style of cooking which is based on classic French cuisine. We push ourselves to be more creative, finding the solutions to attain our sustainability goals;f.ex.by deciding exclude meat as a main ingredient in the signature menus and instead implementing a new, refreshing and creative way of cooking classic gourmet food. Since late 2020, farmed meat has not been a main ingredient in any of our signature menus.
Our hotel and restaurant is situated in the countryside, surrounded by local farmers, producing vegetables, fruits, berries and dairy products. Steffen Villadsen has, taking on his 7th year as a Head Chef and general manager, searched the area of Mols Bjerge (the downs surrounding our restaurant) for local producers to cooperate with, comprisingmainly organic farmers, farming without use of machines and providing their own compost.
We are known as a restaurant where seafood is a permanent feature on the menu, which makes sense as our kitchen is basically situated on the seaside. Here we find deep knowledge of the sea’s gastronomy with vital insight into the value of sustainable fishing for generations to come.
Close collaboration with fish-monger Anders Andreasen helps us make the right choices as he knows we only will accept Danish non-farmed fish caught sustainably. If a certain ingredient is not available due to bad weather or other seasonal challenges we always adjust the composition of the menu to ensure a high level of sustainable gastronomy.
When opening the front door of our restaurant you literally step into nature. We pick herbs, mushrooms, berries and whatever else nature can provide. We use all these available natural ingredients in our menus.
Partnerships – Organic farmers, Fish suppliers and Dairy products
- In 2022 we begin a close collaboration with a local farmer Simon Kahr Jørgensen from Trustrupgård, which is situated in the small town of Trustrup just 14 km from Molskroen. Simon farms fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers in accordance with biodynamic principles in the munificent soil of Djursland - using no machines or use of pesticides. Simon's ideology is clear: nothing should affect the natural taste of his vegetables or the health of his farm. Trustrupgård can provide Molskroen with fresh produce in the quantities needed on a daily basis, including beautiful organic eggs.
We are convinced that the Thustrupgård will be able to help us reach higher organic awareness due to his interest in probiotic foods and help us understand and develop our stock of fermented and pickled foods. Read more: https://www.facebook.com/trustrupgaard
Furthermore, we have engaged in a very exciting parthership with De Flydende Haver (The Floating Gardens). This is an innovative project at the old ferry harbour in Ebeltoft. Their one-hectare aquaponic greenhouse produces fish and vegetables in a closed circuit consisting of fish ponds connected to long lines of hydroponic vegetable beds. This means that the fish' manure will provide the plants with enough nutrients to grow solely in water. The water is then purified by the plants and returned to the fish ponds. In addition, the greenhouse will be connected to heat accumulated from the sun, stored in large tanks, which will keep a temperature of 24*C year-round with no use of electricity. This is a sustainable dream! Initially, De Flydende Haver will produce microgreens for Molskroen as well as different types of kale. Our goal is year-round supply of new fresh potatoes, as well and exotic products such as vanilla, cocoa and melons - products which are possible to produce due to the constant temperature of the aquaponic system. According to leading aquaponics studies, the plants should not suffer from any deficits from not growing in dirt. The minerals from the fish are plenty. We find this a very interesting journey, which we are excited to share with our guests in the future.
The close collaboration with De Flydende Haver ( The Floating Gardens) means that we can decide which type of fish is used in the ponds, such as sturgeons, so that in time we can produce Molskroen caviar.
- Molskroens signature menus are based on seafood and vegetables. We support sustainable fishing and only buy MSC-stamped seafood for our menus. When possible, we support line fishing to preserve the seabed and natural microclimates. Our supplier Havnens Fiskehus supplies Molskroen with local Danish seafood, which we receive fresh from Hanstholm fish auctions on a daily basis. Quality of the produce and the freshness is key for our success.
- The National Park Mols Bjerge which is our actual backyard, is also a supplier.
We pick herbs, berries and mushrooms in the downs. The area provides plenty of rosehip, which we pickle and use for kombucha and juices; elderberries; salty sea herbs; juniper; ramson and so forth. All these ingredients feature in our menus. In our own garden at Molskroen we produce a smaller amount of herbs, berries and vegetables as a supplement. We have a beehive to produce honey and maintain a good insect balance in our surroundings.
- All dairy products we use are local and organic. Our complete cheese assortment is delivered by Arla Unika. Arla Unika is a branch organisation in Denmark helping small Danish dairies sell their amazing products to the restaurants. Old-school craftsmanship from the best organic milk. Our milk and butter is supplied by Thiese Mejeri from the northern part of Jutland, Denmark.
- Animal welfare: We do not use foie gras or veal in our menus. We use organic meat, for which Denmark has high standards for animal welfare. We only use organic eggs, mostly from Trustrupgård. When possible, we integrate the unused cuts of meat to reduce food waste. For example, from september to december 2020 our menu featured a main course of turbot and oxtail.
- Beverages:This year we have chosen a new line of beers and sodas from local producers Ebeltoft Gårdbryggeri and Thy, instead of Carlsberg and Coca Cola.
Our alcohol-free pairing is getting a lot more attention and will consist of homemade products such as juices, kombuchas, cold brews and more, with a focus on local produce mainly from Trustrupgård and our surrounding nature.
Food waste, waste management & recycling
We have a steady routine of managing food waste. Anything that can’t be frozen or pickled will be delivered to Molskroens Brasserie, right across the street. The Brasserie is open seven days a week and can utilize leftovers from the Molskroen restaurant.
We separate our rubbish. Food scraps are collected for producing animal feed,cardboard and paper is collected for recycling,glass and porcelain is recycled. All plastic bottles are reused under the Danish bottle deposit system. Grease and oil are collected for making fuel.
Our laundry service De Forenede Dampvaskerier makes a great effort to minimize climate impact and have implemented closed circuit systems, reusing their own water supply. We are using recycled clothes. Read more: https://www.dfd.dk/løsninger/Documents/DFD_CSR%20Rapport%202018.pdf
We use the supplier Ecolab for all our cleaning products. They show great initiative towards helping their customers to save water and use less chemicals. To read about their full sustainability program, go to: www.ecolab.com/sustainability
Social Responsibility and HR
We arrange staff meetings twice a year regarding our work with sustainability, our written policy and goals for the coming season. The written policy is distributed to all staff. We inspire our employees to bring fresh and creative thinking to the surface.
The staff is in close contact with our producers and suppliers as deliveries are made at the door. We invite staff to go to Trustrupgård, De Flydende Haver, the farm Kaj’s Asparagus, Andersen winery and so forth to pick our vegetables, taste produce directly from the soil and pet the animals. Everyone is in close contact with the ingredients presented on the plate.
We are well organized and have a collective agreement with the Danish labour union 3F https://www2.3f.dk/find-overenskomst/privat-service.
We offer attractive pension, free healthcare including physio-therapists, chiropractors and psychologists to our employees. Furthermore, we offer continuing education to individuals, such as sommelier courses, pastry classes etc. We emphasize equality in our workplace. We have a diversity of employees from different countries with various religions and sexual orientation. We have a 50/50 balance between male and female employees with no stereotype view on gender-specifics.
To enforce a healthy work environment, we have formed a work group consisting of 2 managers and 2 employees, managing our companys work risk assessment, an important tool to manage our policies and maintain a healthy work environment. The group has several meetings each year and picks up on new challenges, for example how we improve help employees with psychological issues related to covid-19. Once a year we update our work risk assessment.
Furniture & Interior Design
Our choice of furniture is classic Danish design, from designers such as Hans Wegner and Finn Juhl. All is handcrafted in wood, and the designs are timeless and durable.
Most of our plates are from the famous Danish porcelain factory Royal Copenhagen. Water glasses and glass ornaments are from local glassblower Karen Nyholm. We do not buy cut flowers for decoration in hotel rooms but use durable plants to avoid transport and lower CO2-production.
Summary –Goals 2022
We will explore the benefits and produce coming from aquaponics. Being a completely closed circuit, it is truly sustainable and a very important step for us on our ecological path. We will put much energy into the collaboration with De Flydende Haver. We have plans of setting up a small aquaponic at the hotel so it’s easier for us to explain the system to our guests. This small aquaponic will be able to produce mint for cocktails and juice in the bar etc.
We have focus on our future collaboration with Trustrupgård, who will be our main supplier of fresh fruits and vegetables. Steffen Villadsen and Simon Kahr make a complete seasonal plan at the beginning of the year to ensure the supply. The coming season we are determined to develop the new partnerships. This will bring us much further towards achieving our goals.
We always attach great importance to our work risk assessment. For the health, safety and equal/fair treatment of all staff members, who we involve in the process. This is an important tool for maintaining high staff welfare. We are proud of the fact that our employees generally work at Molskroen for many years. Ensuring a healthy work environment where everyone is positively included is of the greatest importance to us.