Global consumer goods giant Unilever announced on Monday a slew of initiatives to reduce environmental damage from its future business growth.
As part of its Sustainable Living Plan, the company aims to source 100 percent of its agricultural raw materials sustainably by 2020.
“We have ambitious plans to grow the company. But growth at any price is not viable. We have to develop new ways of doing business which will ensure that our growth does not come at the expense of the world’s diminishing natural resources,” said Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever.
The group, whose brands include Dove, Vaseline, Persil, Marmite, Knorr, Hellmann’s and Pot Noodle, has set out more than 50 social, economic and environmental targets.
It aims to halve the greenhouse gas emissions, water and waste used not just by the company in its direct operations, but also by its suppliers and consumers.
“By halving the total carbon, water and waste impact of our products, primarily through innovation in the way we source, make and package them, we can help people make a small difference every time they use them,” said Polman. “As our products are used 2 billion times a day in nearly every country in the world, our consumers’ small actions add up to make a big difference,”
The company also pledges to improve livelihoods in developing countries by partnering with Oxfam, Rainforest Alliance and others to link over 500,000 smallholder farmers and small-scale distributors into its supply chain.