Climate change and sustainability talks are ever at the forefront of our industry, and more and more companies are stepping up to the plate to make a difference. One such company is United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI). Recently, UNFI announced its plan to reduce its greenhouse emissions and invest in clean energy.
“Our commitment to setting science-based emissions reduction targets demonstrates our continued focus on reducing our environmental impact, conserving natural resources, and promoting sustainability in our operations and across our value chain,” said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Steven L. Spinner. “We are proud to be the first North American wholesale grocery distributor to align with SBTi (Science Based Targets initiative). We take seriously the need for business accountability in solving this global challenge to ensure a healthy planet for future generations while providing financial returns to our shareholders.”
According to a press release, the distributor established science-based emissions reduction targets that align with the goals of the Paris Agreement to limit climate change on a large scale. These reduction targets are a key component of UNFI’s Environmental, Social, and Governance Agenda, and will be submitted to the SBTi for approval in the next year.
Before adopting SBTi’s methodologies to limit UNFI’s effect on climate change, the company also joined the Climate Collaborative. UNFI is looking ahead toward a cleaner future by piloting a state-of-the-art, solar-powered electric refrigerated trailer. With the use of this trailer, the company will be able to reduce the impact of its fleet on the climate.
“This announcement signals a higher level of ambition for UNFI as we work to reduce our contributions to climate change, embrace innovation, and promote environmental justice in communities across North America,” said Alisha Real, Director of Sustainability and Social Impact. “Climate science clearly states that we cannot continue on a path of business as usual. Collective action is essential, and we look forward to engaging our value chain in these important efforts.”
As UNFI continues to build on its strengths, including its scale and reach within North America, the company pushes toward its new targets and a potentially better environment.
With this example set, will we see more retailers jump up to take the challenge? Deli Market News will report.