Petra Klassen Wigger kicked off her speech by emphasising the importance that all the CGF pillars’ work together, Sustainability and Health & Wellness have key areas of synergies and are both aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Petra then went over the three core resolutions, established in 2011, that are part of the Health & Wellness Pillar and the progress on these commitments. Petra concluded her speech with a forward thinking message on what’s next for the pillar including further alignment with the SDGs, greater collaboration for better lives and the creation of a materiality matrix.
Some 240 delegates from nearly 30 countries joined this year’s Sustainable Retail Summit, held in Paris on 27th & 28th October. The event delivered on its promise to inspire and inform, leaving participants equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to implement sustainable business practices in their organisations and drive positive change across the industry.
The conference brought together thought leaders from business, government and civil society and was a unique education and networking opportunity for all those in attendance.
Steps being taken to develop healthier communities was one of the three core themes of this year’s summit, together with food waste and forced labour, with two sessions focused exclusively on the topic. Health & Wellness Steering Committee Co-Chair Petra Klassen Wigger was also on hand to help kick off the event by providing the audience with an introduction to our work.
The summaries of these sessions can be found below and have been taken from the Sustainable Retail Summit Executive Summary.
Day 1: Introduction to Health & Wellness
– Petra Klassen Wigger, Scientific Advisor/ Corporate Nutrition, Nestle S.A.
Day 1: Healthier Communities Discussion
CEO Chimney Talk:
– Guido Barilla, Chairman, Barilla and Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition Foundation
– Sonat Burman-Olsson, President & CEO, Coop Sverige AB
– Emmanuel Faber, CEO, Danone
A Chef’s View:
– Thierry Marx, French Chef specialised in molecular gastronomy
– Demir Aytaç, Chief Human Resources Officer, Migros, Turkey
– Richard Ellis, Group Head of Corporate Social Responsibility, Walgreens Boots Alliance
Guido Barilla began by saying in order to guarantee the future of food, our industry must ask and answer difficult questions. He said we face a number of challenges and the problems we face are our own. We, as an industry, created them. Thankfully, we know we can change. We can drive new business solutions and inspire legislation the right way. Guido concluded by noting we need to eat better, eat less and pay more. If we don’t understand value, we will face continuing problems.
Sonat Burman-Olsson noted how health and wellness has been on Sweden’s public agenda for many years. The government is doing numerous things to ensure health, while retailers are doing things too. Grocery retail is very intense in Sweden, but, on health, we work together, she said. For Coop, our customers own our business, so they are pushing us on a daily basis.
Emmanuel Faber then talked about the importance of events like the Sustainable Retail Summit in bringing everyone together. He said that over the last 50 years, the retail industry has been successful in increasing calorie intakes, but this is no longer sustainable. He stressed the importance of food diversity in tackling problems like food insecurity and health. It’s not about standardisation. We need to understand local eating habits and traditions and he is convinced the future relies on diversity of food types and diversity of agriculture. You have to look at where and why people eat.
As the CEOs came together, the conversation focused on key topics like GMOs, paying a fair price, food diversity, eating in moderation and the need for greater innovation. They also stressed the need for retailers and manufacturers to collaborate on health.
Chef Thierry Marx also looked at the role of innovation and importance of understanding where food comes from and where it will go in the future. Through a think tank, he has spent a lot of time looking at this. He said price is extremely important in showcasing quality. He said we need to see value in what we buy. However, we also need to put the right training and education programmes in place to ensure long-term health and wellbeing.
In the panel, Demir Aytaç noted how Migros had put emphasis on helping employees become health ambassadors. He said their goal is to change communities through their employees.
Richard Ellis then noted how Walgreens Boots Alliance changed its thinking by comparing itself to countries. Once they did this, they began thinking about their responsibilities differently. He said you need to find ways to win for everyone and collaboration is one core way his company is achieving this.
Lastly, Isabelle Grosmaitre shared Danone’s experience on healthier communities. She said their work is about bringing health through food to as many people as possible. She said we need to find solutions and how food is the most significant partner to health and the important role of research in understanding people’s habits. We can then act locally, measure progress and impact and act together.
Day 2: Healthier Communities Case Studies
– Christine Cioffe, Senior Vice President Global R&D Strategy and Portfolio Management, PepsiCo
– Greg Beddoe, Global VP of R&D, Mars Food
– Julie Greene, Health & Nutrition Director, Ahold Delhaize
Christine Cioffe began the session on healthier communities by introducing PepsiCo’s journey and plans, highlighting the recently-announced Performance for Purpose 2025 objectives that focused on products, people and the planet. On products, she said PepsiCo is committed to reducing calories, sugar, saturated fat and sodium levels. She said PepsiCo also wants to offer more everyday nutrition and provide access to understand communities and consumers. She stressed it’s not just about the removal of ingredients. She then provided examples of this commitment in action. Christine said the approach taken must start with the consumer, looking at the consumer context and evolution of the industry and what is impacting food and beverage of the future. Christine then talked about the importance of employee health and wellness. She concluded by highlighting how PepsiCo is open to partnerships with all, and that it’s an emphasis on outcomes and providing more choices and sustainable practices that dictate who PepsiCo partners with.
Greg Beddoe led delegates through how nutrition is a driver of health and wellbeing at Mars. He said it’s imperative we can talk about growth we are proud of. He introduced the Mars Food Nutrition Criteria, saying it covers every part of their business. He said food is science and art. We need to blend the science of nutrition with art, noting that we eat with our eyes first. He said food from Mars has to make lives easier – easier to choose and use. He then talked about their approach to reformulation to promote healthier communities and their five-year journey. He said you need consumer buy in, so taste is king. Flavour is therefore evaluated in the context of the meal and how Mars can enhance taste while improving nutrition. He provided a number of examples of how Mars is driving positive change for the consumer – like how cross-promotions will not deliver more than the recommended daily allowance of sodium or added sugar from 2017. Greg closed by looking at Mars’ key learnings, providing both the key enablers and challenges.
Julie Greene then joined the discussion by looking at the role of food retail in healthier communities. She began with exploratory questions to help define who we are as retailers, why retailers exist and what ethical role retailers have in communities. She said retailers were created to provide access, variety and convenience, but their role has now developed to much more. She said consumers still need convenience, but are also seeking guidance, service, affordability and improved quality. She also said other channels are encroaching on food retail and retailers should seek to solve the evolving needs of the consumer. The challenge is clear, she said, but the way forward requires change. However, she also noted that not every retailer or region is at the same level of readiness to change. She closed by saying that people managing nutrition-related chronic illness need to change or face the consequences. The food industry needs to change too and support the health of our communities.
STANDARD: The BRCGS Global Standard for Ethical Trade & Responsible Sourcing Issue 2 achieved SSCI Recognition under Scope AI — Social Compliance: Manufacturing & Processing in November 2021.
BRCGS is an established global standards leader, with a rigorous GFSI recognised assurance program that touches every aspect of the 21st century supply chain – from food ingredients to packaging, distribution, retail and beyond. It sets the benchmark for best practice manufacturing, helping to provide reassurance that products and services are high quality, legal and safe. BRCGS is recognised across food and non-food categories as the global standard underpinning brand reputation through compliance, at over 30,000 certificated sites in 130 countries. Visit brcgs.com to find out more.
Responsible Fishing Vessel Standard
STANDARD: The Responsible Fishing Vessel Standard 2.1 achieved SSCI Recognition under Scope CI — Social Compliance: At-Sea Operations in November 2022.
In 2018, Global Seafood Assurances and the UK Sea Fish Industry Authority (Seafish) announced a memorandum of understanding to work together to create the next version of the Responsible Fishing Scheme (RFS), committing to expand its global applicability, which resulted in the creation of the Responsible Fishing Vessel Standard. Now part of the Global Seafood Alliance, GSA took ownership of the standards last year. The first RFVS-certified vessel was announced in Australia in January, and the second set of RFVS-certified vessels was announced in the United Kingdom in April. The standard addresses social responsibility, including working conditions and worker voice, about fishing vessels.
STANDARD: The SIZA Social Standard Version 6 achieved SSCI Recognition under Scopes AI — Social Compliance: Manufacturing & Processing, and BI — Social Compliance: Primary Production in June 2023.
SIZA, the Sustainability Initiative of South Africa, is enabling the South African agricultural sector to become a global leader in sustainable farming, ethical trade, and environmental stewardship. The aim is to encourage continuous improvement in practices over time. SIZA aims to have a cost-effective approach for growers by supplying one standard and one audit, no matter which market a producer supplies. SIZA engages directly with stakeholders throughout the value chain to improve supply chain sustainability, ensuring compliance and reducing risks while at the same time offering support and training with regard to best practices and continuous improvement. Verification occurs via third-party audits. For more information on SIZA, please visit our website: www.siza.co.za
Founded in 2003, the amfori BSCI enables companies to drive sustainability by setting up the human rights due diligence principles that business enterprises strive to implement in their global supply chain.
Representing over 2,400 participants in 46 countries, the amfori BSCI operates in a variety of sectors, the two largest being General Merchandise, and Garment & Textile with a combined annual turnover is evaluated to EUR 1.6 trillion.
The amfori BSCI Code of Conduct set out the values and principles for the implementation of supply chain due diligence, based on the OECD’s six-step framework. The amfori BSCI System Manual outlines the supporting tools and methodology for participants to exercise human rights due diligence and environmental protection set out in the amfori BSCI Code of Conduct.
STANDARD: The GAA Seafood Processing Standard Issue 5.1 is currently being benchmarked under Scope AI — Social Compliance: Manufacturing & Processing.
A division of the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA), Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) is an international certification program based on achievable, science-based and continuously improved performance standards for the entire aquaculture production chain – including processing plants, farms, hatcheries and feed mills. BAP standards cover environmental responsibility, social accountability, food safety and animal welfare. The BAP program is based on independent audits that evaluate compliance with the BAP standards developed by GAA.
Fairness, Integrity, Safety, and Health (FISH) Standard for Crew
STANDARD: FISH Standard for Crew Version 1.0 is currently being benchmarked under Scope CI — Social Compliance: At-Sea Operations.
The Fairness, Integrity, Safety, and Health (FISH) Standard for Crew is a voluntary, third party labour certification program for wild harvest fishing vessels. FISH is designed to provide harvesters a tool to demonstrate to customers and other stakeholders that the seafood harvested comes from responsible sources with respect to crew treatment, compensation, and conditions. It was developed with input from the full seafood supply chain, including large and small harvesters, processors, retailers and restaurant groups, in consultation with labour non-profit organisations, to create a program that is open to vessels and fleets of all sizes around the globe. Read more about the Standard here.
STANDARD: The Florverde standard for the sustainable production of flowers and ornamentals version 7.2.1 is currently being benchmarked under Scope BI – Social Compliance: Primary Production.
Florverde Sustainable Flowers (FSF) is an independent social and environmental standard which ensures that flowers certified under this scheme have been responsibly produced. This requires flower growers to adopt measures that will protect and enable worker’s rights, implement best environmental practices, and comply with national regulations. FSF also helps safeguard quality by requiring the proper care and handling of flowers.
STANDARD: FSSC 24000 Social Management System Certification Version 1.0 is currently being benchmarked under Scope AI — Social Compliance: Processing and Manufacturing.
The aim of FSSC 24000 is to ensure that social sustainability management system requirements are met, resulting in certifications that assure organisations provide safe and fair working conditions, meet business ethics requirements, and apply due diligence in their supply chain management. FSSC 24000 provides a strategic approach incorporating the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle and risk-based thinking, which ensures the identification and control of social risk and continuous improvement. This process demonstrates corporate responsibility and facilitates improving the social management systems and performance thus driving impact.
FSSC 24000’s scope of certification includes the manufacturing and processing sector (food and non-food), including its related service provision. The certificate confirms that the organisation’s social sustainability management system is in conformance with the FSSC 24000 Scheme requirements based on the following normative documents:
BSI/PAS 24000:2022 – Social management system requirements (Publicly Available Specification)
FSSC 24000 Additional Requirements (as determined by the FSSC Board of Stakeholders)
The FSSC 24000 certification scheme is owned and governed by the non-profit Foundation FSSC and outlines the requirements for the audit and certification of a Social Sustainability Management System of an organization. More information on the FSSC 24000 Scheme is available on their website.
STANDARD: The KFC Flowers and Ornamentals Sustainability Standard Version December 2021 is currently being benchmarked under Scopes AI — Social Compliance: Manufacturing & Processing, and BI — Social Compliance: Primary Production.
Kenya Flower Council (KFC) is the country’s leading Business Membership Association for growers and exporters of cut-flower and ornamentals. KFC members account for approximately 80 percent of Kenya’s floricultural exports.
KFC also owns the Flowers and Ornamentals Sustainability Standards (FOSS), a trusted standard worldwide. It is one of only three internationally benchmarked standards that demonstrate sustainable social, environmental and good agricultural business practice benchmarks set by the EU-based Floriculture Sustainability Initiative (FSI). The standard encourages commitment to ethical practices, innovation and promoting equitable trading practices, thus ensuring that certified producers foster sustainable, responsible and safe production of cut flowers and ornamentals.
The Council is in the forefront promoting Kenya as a reliable source of quality cut flowers and ornamentals and the country’s competitiveness in the global floriculture trade. KFC is actively engaged in all major trade negotiations in existing, new and emerging markets and in amplifying Kenya’s image in the international market as the most trusted source of cut flowers and ornamentals.
Currently, Kenya is the third largest producer of cut-flowers and ornamentals in the world and exports to over 60 destinations globally. Floriculture is the fastest growing export sector in the Kenyan economy, providing direct employment for over 200,000 workers.
KFC engages with key actors locally for a favourable business environment for growers and exporters of cut flowers and ornamentals.
The Rainforest Alliance Sustainable Agriculture Standard, is designed to deliver more value to the more than four million farmers and workers and thousands of businesses that use Rainforest Alliance certification to drive more sustainable agricultural production and responsible supply chains. The Sustainable Agriculture Standard is used in more than 70 countries around the globe. Their program focuses on coffee, cocoa, tea, bananas, and many other important commodity sectors facing urgent environmental and social challenges.
Wine and Agricultural Ethical Trade Association (WIETA)
STANDARD: WIETA Standard Version 4.0 is currently being benchmarked under Scope AI — Social Compliance: Manufacturing & Processing.
The Wine and Agricultural Ethical Trade Association T/A WIETA was the first South African social standard, established in 2002, to establish an appropriate social auditing methodology for fruit and wine suppliers in South Africa. WIETA proudly demonstrates how a multi-stakeholder model can successfully promote a world class ethical trade and human rights programme within the wine value chain. Innovative social dialogue engagements, a rigorous capacity building and training programme for both workers and producers, coupled with a participative multi-pronged approach to auditing and remedial approach to ensure sustained corrective actions.