Mondelēz International steps up to cut its carbon footprint

Rebecca Ellinor Tyler is former editor of Supply Management
27 October 2015

Food manufacturer Mondelēz International has announced new sustainability goals to speed up action to reduce its impact on climate change.

The $30 billion turnover business, which owns brands including Cadbury, Milka and Oreo, has more than 100,000 staff and supplies products to more than 165 countries worldwide. It said its more challenging aims focus on reducing some key end-to-end environmental impacts from the field through to distribution.

Mondelēz plans to cut its carbon footprint by 2020, through adopting science-based targets to reduce absolute carbon dioxide emissions from manufacturing by 15 per cent, against its 2013 baseline. Science Based Targets is a joint initiative by the CDP [Carbon Disclosure Project], UN Global Compact, World Resources Institute and WWF. Targets adopted by companies to reduce greenhouse gases are considered ‘science-based’ if they are in line with the level of carbon reduction required to keep global temperature increase below 2°C compared with pre-industrial temperatures.

The company is also switching from reporting emissions per tonne to a more demanding absolute basis that focuses on its total. It aims to address deforestation within its key agriculture supply chains, primarily in cocoa and palm oil, and has committed to measuring and reporting publicly the resulting end-to-end carbon footprint reduction.

Its Sustainability 2020 initiatives plan to:

• Cut its water footprint by reducing absolute incoming water use in manufacturing, focusing on priority sites where water is most scarce. It aims for a 10 per cent reduction at these

• Reduce waste by eliminating 65,000 tonnes of packaging, without contributing to food waste

• Reduce total manufacturing waste by 20 per cent

Hubert Weber, executive vice president and president of Mondelez Europe, said: “These goals place us at the forefront of the fight against climate change and support our ambition to be the leader in well-being snacks, while reducing costs and generating efficiencies that accelerate our growth.”

Mondelēz International said it will continue to invest and expand its Cocoa Life programme to empower 200,000 cocoa farmers in six key origins. Ultimately, it aims to source all of its cocoa sustainably and this will help it secure a key raw material while supporting the livelihoods of smallholders. It will also go beyond its European Harmony wheat programme to take a global approach to the commodity.

The move comes after the company achieved its 2015 goals for packaging, greenhouse gas emissions and net waste a year ahead of schedule.

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