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Kraft Heinz Pledges $200 Million Investment in Environmental Management, CSR Efforts

tomatoesKraft Heinz this week set new corporate social responsibility targets that include improving environmental management and creating a more sustainable supply chain. The company also said it will publish its first CSR report this year.

“We’re planning to invest $200 million in ‘Growing a Better World’ through our global CSR initiatives,” Julio Quintana-Castillo, senior manager of sustainability programs at Kraft Heinz told Environmental Leader.

Kraft Heinz says the new CSR goals support the company’s vision “To Be the Best Food Company, Growing a Better World,” and will initially focus on three areas: global hunger and malnutrition, supply chain sustainability and the environment.

Kraft Heinz said it will set responsible farm-to-market ingredient and material-sourcing policies and practices as it works to improve supply chain sustainability. Its new policy commits the company to procuring palm oil products in an ethical, transparent and sustainable manner, and only purchasing palm oil and derivatives 100 percent certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil.

The company says it is also actively working with its global suppliers to achieve palm oil traceability, prohibit the use of child and forced labor and protect existing forests and habitats.

The policy also reinforces and introduces several supplier guidelines for humane sourcing, including commitments to use eggs only from hens living in cage-free and/or enriched environments and the transition away from traditional gestation stall housing for pregnant sows by 2025.

In terms of environmental management, Kraft Heinz says it will decrease its environmental footprint by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, energy, water and waste in its operations by 15 percent globally by 2020 (versus a 2015 baseline). Efforts are currently underway to maximize efficient energy and water consumption and reduce or divert waste at each of the 86 company-owned manufacturing plants.

Quintana-Castillo said the company is working with a third-party firm to audit its manufacturing operations and identify opportunities to reduce energy use and use renewable energy. It is also testing an energy management and monitoring system to help plant managers optimize energy use at their sites in real time.

“Part of ‘Growing a Better World’ is protecting valuable resources,” Quintana-Castillo said, and that includes water. “We’re currently working with two third party partners globally to audit and identify water conservation opportunities in our manufacturing plants. Those insights will direct how we achieve our goal to reduce water use by 15 percent globally.”

The company plans to reduce the amount of wast produced “by regularly monitoring, measuring and minimizing waste generation in our manufacturing plants,” Quintana-Castillo said. “When possible, we recycle remaining waste or identify where the waste has further value.”

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