Unilever has published a report on the progress it has made towards meeting its Sustainable Living Plan targets. The plan, published in November 2010, broke new ground by committing to take responsibility for the company's impact across the entire supply chain.
As part of the update, Unilever has announced that by the end of 2012 it will reach its target of 100% certified sustainable palm oil covered by Green Palm Certificates, a full three years ahead of schedule. While this is strong progress, the company recognises that the Green Palm Scheme is only a step along the road towards sustainable palm oil, not the end game.
Although it will be even more difficult to achieve, Unilever has now set a new target of purchasing all its palm oil from traceable sources by 2020. This means it will be able to track all of the certified oil it buys back to the plantation on which it was originally grown.
The report also includes challenges Unilever has faced on its sustainability journey, such as encouraging people to eat foods with lower salt levels and how it plans to overcome them to meet its targets. Unilever Food Solutions will be supporting its efforts by continuing to develop products and services to support operators, including expanding its school nutrition programmes; food safety training; and waste campaign coalitions globally.
Tracey Rogers, managing director of Unilever Food Solutions, said: "The old view of growth at any cost is unacceptable; today the only responsible way to do business is through sustainable growth. It's for this reason that the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan is not just a bolt-on strategy; it's our blueprint for the future."
● For more information on the Sustainable Living Plan and its first-year report, visit www.unilever.com/sustainable-living
By Lisa Jenkins
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