Kerry, the global taste & nutrition and consumer foods group, issues the following Interim Management Statement for the first quarter ended 31 March 2020. This statement is issued in conjunction with the Group’s Annual General Meeting which is being held today.
Kerry's Sustainability Programme reflects our vision for making the world of food, beverage and pharma better. Building on our work to date, and our heritage as a farmer cooperative, we now look to use our global scale to positively impact on those we connect with.
In 2015, the Group launched a five year sustainability programme ‘Towards 2020’ to build on previous success. A comprehensive strategy based around four key pillars, that programme provided a strong framework for action and set out clear commitments that helped to direct our activities. As we enter a new decade, we are launching a new programme that reflects a changing industry landscape and the requirement for business to take a lead on many sustainability issues.
Kerry’s objective is to integrate sustainability into all aspects of our business. Our efforts are focused on the most material issues for Kerry and its stakeholders. We examine the ways in which we can reduce our adverse impacts and identify where our skills and expertise can make a positive difference. Since 2009, we have been formally measuring and reporting on our impacts and in 2019, we concluded the five year Towards 2020 programme.
Building on the success of previous initiatives, this programme involved a comprehensive set of actions spanning our direct operations and broader value chain. Structured around four pillars; Environment, Marketplace, Workplace and Community, the Towards 2020 Programme set measurable targets for improvement over time. Since 2015, delivery against these targets has helped us to enhance the lives of the people who create and consume our products, connect us with our communities and protect the natural environment that surrounds us. As we move forward, our approach is evolving to better enable our Purpose and reflect the systemic nature of the sustainability challenges we face. While our objective of creating healthier, more sustainable diets will remain unchanged, a shift in emphasis to key themes will help us to address challenges more holistically and in a way that better equips us to tackle the interdependencies between many of our material aspects. Details of this new programme will be launched in the second quarter of 2020.
UN Sustainable Development Goals
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a globally accepted roadmap for addressing many of the most urgent global economic, environmental and social challenges. Agreed at international level in September 2015, the achievement of these 17 goals by 2030 requires broad participation and creates a key role for businesses in delivering solutions that can help meet these challenges.
As a world leader in the food and beverage industry, our most significant contribution to the SDGs will come through enabling our customers to improve the healthfulness and nutritional value of their products in a way that does not compromise the environment, the rights of others or the long term effectiveness of our business.
We will continue to be successful, while playing a positive role in the broader sustainable development agenda through purposeful business action and throughout this review, we highlight the SDGs we impact on under each pillar. While we touch on many of the goals, SDGs 2, 3 and 12 have particular strategic relevance for our business and we see the greatest potential for positive impact and opportunity in helping meet these goals.