Hershey Sets New 10-Year Sustainability Goals To Reduce Environmental Footprint

Kimberly Redmond  |

Image source: The Hershey Company

The Hershey Company (NYSE:  HSY) unveiled new sustainability goals call for a reduction of global emissions through a combination of renewable energy investments, packaging innovations and sustainable land use policies. 

The Pennsylvania-based candy and snacks company announced a new set of science-based targets this week that are in line with the Paris Climate Agreement and build upon Hershey’s 2019 pledge to reduce its carbon footprint.

Hershey, whose brands include KitKat, Reese’s, Twizzlers, York and Almond Joy, employs 17,000 workers worldwide.

As part of its new goals, Hershey said it will reduce its absolute Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by more than 50% and its absolute Scope 3 emissions by 2030, compared to a 2018 baseline.

Scope 1 emissions are direct greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from sources controlled or owned by an organization; Scope 2 emissions are indirect GHG emissions associated with the purchase of electricity, steam, heat or cooling; and Scope 3 emissions are other indirect GHG emissions. 

To reach that target, Hershey is aiming for 100% of its plastic packaging to be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2030. It will also continue reducing its packaging weight, the company said.

Hershey met a 2015 goal to lower that number by 25 million pounds within a decade. After meeting that target five years early, the company set a new objective to reduce packaging weight by an additional 25 million pounds by 2030.

As part of its investment in renewable energy, Hershey said it signed two power purchase agreements that will enable the construction of two new utility-scale solar farms.  

It will also adopt a no-deforestation policy across its global supply chain. Suppliers who do not adhere to the policy could face suspension or removal from the chain.

Jeff King, Hershey’s senior director of global sustainability and social impact, described the new commitments as “critical to the long-term sustainability of our business.”

“The work is interconnected across our business and requires us to bring together all efforts across the company, from manufacturing, energy buying and packaging to make it work seamlessly to reach our goals,” he said in a press release.

Several other food and beverage companies including Mars Inc, PepsiCo Inc (NYSE:  PEP), The Coca Cola Company (NYSE:  KO) and Nestlé S.A. (OTC US:  NSRGY) have pledged to decrease emissions, reduce plastic waste and adopt more sustainable operating procedures.

Michele Buck, the company’s president and chief executive officer, said, “Climate change is one of the most urgent threats to our planet.”

“In order to deliver on our purpose to make more moments of goodness, we must operate with sustainability at the forefront and commit to doing our part to address climate change,” said Buck. "We will continue to use our scale and apply the full force of our business to reduce our greenhouse emissions and drive climate action forward."

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Source: Equities News

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