The global nutrition, health and wellness company has already achieved its target to reduce direct greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per tonne of product by 35% on 2005 baseline, achieving a 35.4% reduction in 2013.

It has also hit its waste target – Nestlé aimed for zero waste for disposal at 10% of its factories by 2015, but has already achieved 12%, 61 factories, in 2013.

And company has almost reached its energy-reduction target, needing just a further 2% reduction to reach the target 25% per tonne of product on the 2005 base level by 2015.

Holistic approach

While Nestlé has already hit its GHG and waste targets, it said its ‘holistic approach’ to climate change meant it would not prioritise GHG reductions at the expense of other resources, such as water. It also said that its efforts to reduce waste were hampered by insufficiently developed public waste recovery and recycling infrastructure in many countries.

Nestlé is on track to meet its direct water withdrawal target of 40% per tonne of product since 2005, achieving 33% in 2013.

The company said: “We have achieved substantial improvements in water efficiency in recent years, against many competing priorities, and will continue to do so. But seeking new opportunities requires a creative and, at times, pioneering approach.”


Nestlé’s commitment to sustainability has already been acknowledged by it being named best in its sector in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index Series 2013.

Nestlé has some work to do on responsible sourcing, being only just over halfway towards its responsible sourcing target, achieving 17% of the 30% of the volume of key commodities by 2015 required. It has yet to set a formal packaging reduction target, but is applying its more holistic approach to the entire value chain, achieved a 66,594 tonne reduction in packaging in 2013.

Despite a formal packaging target, the firm has made its commitment to packaging improvements clear through collaborative projects such as one with Tesco UK and Cocoa Cola researching cost-effective collection and reprocessing methods for hard-to-recycle packaging materials. Nestlé is also part of a two-year collaborative project with Unilever aiming to improve the recyclability of ‘flexible packaging’ such as sweet and crisp wrappers.

“This report underlines our firm belief that for a company to prosper over the long term and create value for shareholders, it must create value for society at the same time,” said Nestlé South Africa chief executive Paul Bulcke.

“It charts the real progress we have made in meeting our societal commitments. Each and every commitment is based on our own convictions, not convenience or public pressure. Respect for people, different cultures, for the environment and for the future of the world we live in, are the foundation of Creating Shared Value.”

Nestle in Society Summary Report 2014

Lucinda Dann

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