The Hershey Company is preparing to optimize its operations in the coming years, setting science-based targets to reduce emissions in line with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement and investing in renewable energy and land-use initiatives.
"Climate change is one of the most urgent threats to our planet that we face today. In order to deliver on our purpose to make more moments of goodness, we must operate with sustainability at the forefront and commit to doing our part to address climate change," said Michele Buck, The Hershey Company President and Chief Executive Officer. "We will continue to use our scale and apply the full force of our business to reduce our greenhouse emissions and drive climate action forward."
In addition to these sustainability goals, the company has announced that it has a target goal of making 100 percent of its plastic packaging recyclable, reusable, or compostable by 2030, alongside a no-deforestation policy.
According to a press release, Hershey will deploy a comprehensive, global approach to reduce emissions through targeted investments in energy efficiency, renewable energy, packaging innovations, as well as sustainable land-use policies.
These efforts are due in part to Hershey's new commitments to reduce its impact on the planet as part of its Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) agenda, which has become a priority for the company and a focus for how it operates its business around the world.
Of the following goals, Jeff King, Senior Director of Global Sustainability and Social Impact, had this to say:
"These environmental commitments are critical to the long-term sustainability of our business. The work is interconnected across our business and requires us to bring together all efforts across the company, from manufacturing, energy buying and packaging to make it work seamlessly to reach our goals,” he explained.
The release outlined the following sustainability goals Hershey has outlined for itself.
Investing in Energy Efficiency
Hershey has signed two power purchase agreements (PPAs) that will enable the construction of two new utility-scale solar farms. Additional energy efficiency projects are being pursued around the world, and the company will continue on its path towards an increasing reliance on clean and renewable energy across all operations.
These efforts, along with others, are expected to reduce Hershey's Scope 1 and Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions by more than 40 percent by 2024.
Each Hershey location around the world has designated an Energy Champion, who is responsible for implementing carbon savings, meeting energy conservation goals, promoting employee engagement, and identifying opportunities for energy reduction and efficiencies.
Advancing Sustainable Packaging Solutions
Innovative packaging solutions are top of mind for the company when it comes to reducing its environmental footprint. In 2015, Hershey committed to reduce its packaging weight by 25 million pounds by 2025 and has successfully delivered on that promise five years ahead of schedule.
Hershey’s new packaging goal is to reduce packaging weight an additional 25 million pounds by 2030. As mentioned earlier, it is also targeting 100 percentof its plastic packaging to be recyclable, reusable, or compostable by 2030.
Ending Deforestation by 2030
Hershey is committing to end deforestation across its supply chain by 2030 with a new company-wide deforestation policy. This commitment to end deforestation applies to all suppliers across its raw material supply chains, though the company will prioritize achieving independent verification of compliance with this policy for the commodities in its supply chain that present the greatest risk of contributing to deforestation: cocoa, palm oil, pulp and paper (packaging), and soy.
As part of Hershey's No Deforestation commitment, the company will take action regarding any supplier that is not in compliance with the policy, including potentially suspending or removing them from its supply chain.
Continue to read alongside Deli Market News as we cover what companies are doing to make its operations more sustainable.