Some Positive News About Corporate Responsibility


Not trusting big corporations can be easy, but every once in a while we get some good news that let’s us know that a few of them are headed in the right direction--or at least some of their divisions are.

Two pieces of news this week:

Cereal giant Kellogg Company announced recently that they will be operating under new responsible sourcing standards and new conservation goals that they will reach by 2020. Among the list of targets:

  • Responsibly source its top 10 ingredients and materials by 2020, and validate compliance across all direct suppliers by 2015.

  • Continue to provide resources and education to key agricultural suppliers, millers and farmers to help them increase their resilience to climate change; optimize their use of fertilizer inputs; reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in their agricultural practices; optimize water use and enhance watershed quality; and improve soil health.

For conservation:

  • Expand use of low-carbon energy in plants by 50 percent by 2020.

  • Support watershed quality, implement water reuse projects in 25 percent of plants by 2020, and further reduce water use by an additional 15 percent (per metric tonne of food produced) from 2015 performance.

  • Increase to 30% the number of plants sending zero waste to landfill by 2016.

Check out a list of all of their commitments here. Surely, the company will face criticism on their standards not being strict enough to make a big impact (a 15% reduction in GHGs is a good start, but not a climate-change solution), and though we are not sure how far the company may stretch the words “responsible” and “sustainable” (i.e., responsible for whom and sustainable for what?) we are glad to see Kellogg using its market share and influence to try to be a better influence on the world.

In other conservation news, former EPA Administrator Lisa P, Jackson, who is now the VP of Environmental Initiatives at Apple, released a statement outlining the company’s goals to minimize or eliminate toxins from their business. Upholding that Apple has always been committed to doing as such, she vows a recommitment to this goal:

We’ll invest in research on new materials and technologies. We’ll assemble a new advisory board composed of leaders in safer chemicals and pollution prevention to advance our efforts to minimize or eliminate toxins from our products and supply chain. And we’ll listen — convening roundtables with stakeholders to seek out the best science, data, and solutions."

We may wonder just how effective this new campaign will really be, but at the same time we are happy to see that Apple is taking steps to improve their impacts on the Earth.

PHOTO: Thomas Hawk photography on flickr


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