We are a corporate culture of Ownership, which is the foundation of all we do.
A Message from CEO Miguel Patricio
Doing the Right Thing at Kraft Heinz
I have always believed that global companies and brands have the power to help shape the world for good – especially during times of incredible change. As the CEO at Kraft Heinz, I am especially passionate about the role we must play in positively impacting the world. We are a global business, yes – but we are global citizens first who believe in helping create a healthier and more sustainable environment for all of us. And how we bring this to life as a company is as important as what we do.
That is where our new approach to Environmental Social Governance comes in. Through integrated initiatives, we are taking a cross-functional approach that centers continuous improvement in every part of our business as we work to deliver on our commitments by the year 2025. At Kraft Heinz, these efforts line up under three broad pillars: Environmental Stewardship, Responsible Sourcing, and Healthy Living & Community Support.
Our ESG strategy reflects one of our new company Values: We do the right thing. That means we will always strive to do the right thing in all aspects of our business, including with our customers, partners, suppliers, stakeholders, consumers, and communities. We actively care about our environment, creating high-quality products that are manufactured responsibly. This Value is a tangible reminder to every one of our employees each day about our dedication to the sustainable health of people, the planet and the communities where we all live, work and do business.
As a company, we have a duty and a responsibility to be part of the solution. At the same time, we must be honest and transparent about where we have fallen short. We must hold ourselves accountable for working toward the change we want to see in our industry, and in the world. That is why as an organization, we have delved deep, taking time to be thoughtful about where we can make the most difference toward making positive change real. Going forward, we must do more. We will do more.
When the iconic companies of Kraft Foods Group and H.J. Heinz Co. joined forces in 2015, we made corporate citizenship and sustainability efforts important focus areas from the start. Our strategy has always been guided by issues that matter most to our business and stakeholders – and focuses on areas where we can have the greatest impact. And more than ever, our ESG initiatives and commitments are an essential part of the way we do business – and essential to our long-term business strategy.
When it comes to Environmental Stewardship, one area we are focused on is operational efficiency, reducing waste, energy, GHGs, and water, and incorporating sustainable packaging into our products. For example, in 2019 we launched a large water reuse project with a service provider at our Newberry, South Carolina plant that will save roughly 86 million gallons of water every year, with an annual net cost reduction of around $500,000. And we are keenly aware of the impact of climate change and how we can do our part. That is why we have expanded our solar footprint globally and also announced our commitment to procuring a majority of our electricity for our operations from renewable sources by 2025.
When we talk about Responsible Sourcing, we are committed to holding our suppliers – and ourselves – accountable for continuous improvement. We are making progress on our commitments to switch to exclusively purchasing free-range eggs in Europe and cage-free eggs globally, and have established an Animal Welfare Advisory Committee of external stakeholders focused on continuous improvement.
As one of the world’s largest food and beverage companies, we take seriously our role in making sure people have the food and nourishment they need. This is a key element of Healthy Living & Community Support. That’s why even before the 2015 merger of Kraft Foods Group and H.J. Heinz Co., The Heinz Company established a relationship with the international relief organization Rise Against Hunger and launched what remains our signature philanthropic program – the Kraft Heinz Micronutrient Campaign. We take what we know best and do well producing high-quality, great-tasting food – and are using that to help change lives. The Kraft Heinz Micronutrient Campaign supports children’s health and development by manufacturing and donating micronutrient powders – developed by Kraft Heinz food science and nutrition experts – with essential vitamins and minerals. The fight against global hunger is close to our employees’ hearts, and they have helped feed the world by gathering at events to pack and ship these meals to developing countries. We’re continuing to work in partnership with several nonprofit organizations to help provide or donate the equivalent of 1.5 billion nutritious meals to people in need by 2025.
We established global nutrition guidelines focused on improving health and wellness attributes. We work to achieve these through our own product development and renovation, while continually monitoring current science and consumer trends to evolve our vast product portfolio. We committed to expanding these product nutrition guidelines globally, with a target to achieve 70% compliance by 2023 – and in fact, we surpassed this target 4 years early as we have now accomplished 76% worldwide. As a result of our success, we have created a cross-functional task force with clear focus to expand our commitments in this important space of health and wellness with our products. We will continue to focus on healthy product innovation and renovation. I am also proud to convey we have set a new target of 85% across our global portfolio of products based on nutrition guidelines from the World Health Organization, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, the European Food Safety Authority, and leading third-party non-governmental organizations. We will achieve this target by reducing sugar across our portfolio and salt in key categories, increasing our plant-based offerings and simplifying our ingredients.
What helps make all this possible for us at Kraft Heinz is a corporate culture of Ownership, which is the foundation of all we do. Ownership to us means making sure the actions we take not only benefit us and our teams but drive long-term profitable growth for Kraft Heinz. It means driving efficiencies that allow us to reinvest in the company and sustainably grow our business while doing the right thing for consumers and the planet. The same is true when it comes to the ESG commitments we are announcing in this Report. As a company, we succeed and win when communities where we live, work and do business win.
Going forward, we will be more transparent, sharing and communicating clear metrics with stakeholders about the progress we are making against our ESG commitments – and the work we still need to do. We as senior leaders and individual employees will aggressively monitor this progress, from creating internal scorecards to linking ESG target achievement to performance evaluations and earning rewards. We will improve internal visibility, leveraging our scale to share best practices and knowledge across our company supply chain and with our global suppliers. Underlying all our efforts will be a strong focus on continuous improvement, always working to do better and to be better than yesterday.
We are on a long-term journey – and the initiatives within this Report are just the start of a new chapter. We know that achieving our ambitious ESG targets and goals won’t be easy. But we are committed to doing the hard work needed to make them a reality – and expect our Board of Directors and external stakeholders to hold us accountable for achieving real results. Please take time to read the stories inside this ESG Report about how all of us here at Kraft Heinz are working day in and out to protect our planet, positively impact lives across the globe, and make our world a healthier and more sustainable place.
Miguel Patricio Chief Executive Officer The Kraft Heinz Company