Company expands 'Healthy and Sustainable' ambitions
ZAANDAM, the Netherlands — Ahold Delhaize on Monday detailed new long-term targets for its “Healthy and Sustainable” initiative. The company said its efforts are intended to help its customers make healthier and more informed product choices, while increasing product transparency and eliminating waste.
“Food-related diseases and the impact of climate change are affecting billions of people, including those in our communities and our business,” Ahold Delhaize president Frans Muller said in a statement. “That is why we need to accelerate in the areas where we can create the most value. As an international food retailer, we are in a great position to help tackle these global issues together, with our customers and with our partners in the industry and across the supply chain, to create a healthier and more resilient food system. I am convinced that this will make our business stronger and more robust for the future.”
The effort focuses on three main areas:
Healthier choices. Ahold Delhaize’s local brands have set a goal of having healthier products account for 51% of its total own-brand food sales by 2022. To get there, the brands will continue to reformulate products (reducing their sugar, salt and fat content, for example). The retailer also aims to make it easier for consumers to find these healthier products by providing science-based nutritional navigation systems — such as Nutri-Score and Guiding Stars — in stores and online.
Product transparency. Ahold Delhaize said it will also provide more information about where its own-brand products are sourced, under which conditions they are produced and which production methods are used. The company said it will build on the nearly 100% visibility and sustainability it offers in its own-brand seafood supply chains, applying the lessons learned in that effort to its fresh fruit, vegetable, and meat supply chains.
Eliminating waste. Ahold Delhaize said its brands will continue reducing food waste, with the goal of cutting it in half by 2030. In order to balance that goal with its goal of increasing sales of fresh products, the company’s brands will strive to make their replenishment systems more effective. It will also leverage such techniques as dynamic pricing based on sell-by date, and it also expand partnerships that to repurpose unsold but safe food to relieve food insecurity. And as a founding member of the 10x20x30 food waste initiative, Ahold Delhaize is also partnering with 20 key suppliers to reduce food waste throughout our supply chains.
The Ahold Delhaize brands are also working toward zero plastic waste from its own-brand packaging by 2025, through packaging reduction and by moving to fully recyclable, reusable, or compostable plastics. The company said 25% of own-brand plastic packaging will be made from recycled materials by 2025.
Other initiatives associated with Ahold Delhaize’s Healthy and Sustainability inititiative include:
- Setting long-term, science-based targets as of February 2021 to reduce its impact on climate change.
- Conducting due diligence, following the U.N. Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, to ensure that the company’s brands, businesses, and supply chains are protecting the rights of customers, associates and community members.
- Increasing standards for the sustainability of the products the company sells, while maintaining best-in-class standards for food safety and quality.
- Continuing to focus on improving workplace safety.