ConAgra Foods, Inc. has announced five aggressive sustainability goals in the areas of greenhouse gas emissions, water use, solid waste, packaging, and supply chain engagement, to be achieved by 2015. These include:
1. Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% per pound of product produced as compared to 2008 emissions.
2. Reduce water use by 15% per pound of product produced as compared to 2008 water use.
3. Divert solid waste from landfills by at least 75% as compared to 2011 levels.
4. As compared to 2008, the company will: (a) reduce packaging by 10% per pound of product produced, (b) increase the amount of packaging made of renewable resources from 45% to more than 50%, and (c) increase the use of recycled content in packaging overall by 25%.
5. Encourage continuous improvement of the supply chain in the areas of energy, water, materials, and waste. Work with growers to further enhance sustainable farming practices that optimize yield while improving land stewardship.
ConAgra says that the goals build on the company's sustainability accomplishments, which began in a company-wide fashion in 1992 with the ConAgra Foods Sustainable Development Awards program. The company further notes that this is the first time ConAgra Foods has set company-wide sustainability goals.
"Because our food is part of the lives of millions of consumers each day, ConAgra Foods has a critical responsibility to create positive environmental change. We can do that by making our food…in the most sustainable and efficient way possible," says Gary Rodkin, ConAgra Foods CEO. "We've set these new transparent sustainability goals to ensure we are a leader in continuously improving the way we make food, and to continue to create more awareness for what others can do to improve as well."
Since 2007, ConAgra Foods says that it has measured distinct sustainability projects that have reduced carbon emissions by more than 25,000 metric tonnes, eliminated 4,000 tons of landfill waste and 7,000 tons of packaging materials, and conserved 348 million gallons of water.
Results of ConAgra Foods' new sustainability goals will be made publicly available in August of each year through the ConAgra Foods Corporate Responsibility Report.