Nestlé accelerates action to achieve zero net emissions by 2050

One of the world’s largest food and drink companies, Nestlé, has committed to accelerating its climate change efforts to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

“Climate change is one of the biggest threats we face as a society. It is also one of the greatest risks to the future of our business,” said Mark Schneider, Nestlé CEO.

“We are running out of time to avoid the worst effects of global warming. That is why we are setting a bolder ambition to reach a net-zero future. Deploying Nestlé’s global resources and industry know-how, we know we can make a difference at significant scale. Our journey to net zero has already started. Now, we are accelerating our efforts.”

The company, owner of some of the world’s biggest confectionery brands including KitKat, Rowntrees and Quality Street, is determined to play a leading role in tackling climate change and will sign the ‘Business Ambition for 1.5°C’ pledge. Over the past four years, Nestlé has aligned its objectives with science-based targets to keep global temperature increases below 2°C. Over the next two years, it will lay out a time-bound plan including interim targets consistent with the 1.5°C path.

To achieve its 2050 ambition, some of the company’s specific actions include:

  • Speeding up the transformation of its products in line with consumer trends and choices. Nestlé will launch more products that have a better environmental footprint and contribute to a balanced diet, including more plant-based food and beverage options. Nestlé will also look to reformulate its products using more climate-friendly ingredients and alternative packaging materials.
  • Scaling up initiatives in agriculture to absorb more carbon. Nestlé will strengthen its programs with farmers to restore land and limit greenhouse gas emissions, including improved management of its dairy supply chain. The company will also step up efforts to protect forests by replanting trees and enhancing biodiversity.
  • Using 100% renewable electricity in Nestlé factories, warehouses, logistics and offices. A third of Nestlé factories (143) are already using 100% renewable electricity, and the company will continue to increase this number. This will enable suppliers to invest in new infrastructure such as wind and solar farms.

Transforming operations

Magdi Batato, executive vice president, head of operations at Nestlé said: “To align our goals to the 1.5°C pathway, we are transforming our operations. This will lead to a major shift in the way our ingredients are produced and sourced. We will need our suppliers to embark on this journey with us. The task is huge but we are determined to make it happen.”

In the company’s top 100 distribution centres, greenhouse gas emissions have decreased by close to 40% over the past four years, but the company continue its work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across its entire value chain. Since 2014, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions across its entire value chain is equivalent to taking 1.2 million cars off the road.

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