Robert Auselius, Country Manager for Nestlé Finland
Creating Shared Value (CSV) is fundamental to how we do business at Nestlé. Our activities and products should make a positive difference to society while contributing to Nestlé’s ongoing success. Creating Shared Value is about ensuring long-term, sustainable value creation for shareholders while tackling societal issues at the same time. It is about collaboration with our stakeholders just like we do now, during the corona pandemic, as Nestlé supports the work of the Finnish Red Cross and joins forces with International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).
First, I’d like to share with you three major milestones of our CSV work last year: two with a global perspective, and one in Finland.
First, packaging. Together with the whole food and beverage industry, we need to develop solutions that reduce packaging volume and impact without compromising on production. While being fully aware of the fact that plastic waste is of particular public concern, we need to keep in mind that packaging is necessary for food safety and quality.
Nestlé is committed to improving the environmental performance of its packaging. As stated in our commitment, all of our packages will be recyclable or reusable by 2025. We are also founding signatory and a core partner of the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, an initiative led jointly by The Ellen MacArthur Foundation and UN Environment, to promote and encourage progress in tackling the plastic waste problem.
In 2019, 87% of our packaging was recyclable or reusable, and we were able to reduce the use of packaging materials with 100.000 tons, compared to 2018. We’re also working to increase recycled content, and in 2019, 26% of the packaging used in our operations contained recycled materials.
Second, countering deforestation and protecting biodiversity. By the end of March 2019, 76% of our agricultural raw materials were deforestation-free. We anticipate being above 90% by 2020. What’s more, we’re working with smallholder farmers and large suppliers alike to be close to 100% deforestation-free within the next three years.
Then, Finland. Hälsans Kök, a vegetarian pioneer from the 1960s, in 2019, brought Incredible Burgers and chicken-like fillets into the Finnish markets. These products are part of Nestlé’s aim to provide delicious, nutritious and sustainable plant-based options for consumers everywhere. We believe that, by hitting the mainstream instead of targeting niche markets, we can accelerate the food system change for sustainability and health.
In corona crisis, our industry are more important than ever
Amid the corona pandemic, the food and beverage industry have a key role in providing high-quality nutrition, especially for the most vulnerable in society – children, the elderly and those struggling with illness.
People are at the heart of our business. Therefore, the health and safety of our employees, business partners and the communities where we operate are extremely important for us.
Our people have led substantial local relief efforts in the communities around the globe where we operate. We have joined forces with the IFRC in response to its emergency appeal. As part of the emergency response, the IFRC is providing immediate help to strengthen health care systems, where the need is greatest.
In Finland, Nestlé supports the work of the Finnish Red Cross (SPR). Through the SPR Disaster Fund, support goes to help the vulnerable during the corona epidemic. We also donate food products to SPR, which they further distribute to those at risk.