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It’s time to hold agrifood corporates accountable for their climate commitments. This list may help

February 10, 2022

If there was one key takeaway my colleague Louisa Burwood-Taylor and other attendees took from the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, UK, last October, it was the need for corporate accountability.

The world’s climate crisis has finally taken center stage with more attention, headlines, and public commitments than ever before across industries.

Major food and ag corporations have made numerous public climate commitments in recent years, mostly focused on slashing greenhouse gas emissions and reaching carbon neutrality in the coming years or decades. Agrifood corporate climate commitments went full-on mainstream in 2020 and 2021, with mammoth corporations like General Mills and multi-billion restaurant chains like McDonald’s making pledges to pursue regenerative farming practices or reach net zero in 2050. COP26 accelerated the number of corporate commitments.

And while overall it’s positive news, “corporate accountability” was declared missing from the COP26 agenda, and many now ask how meaningful the litany of climate commitments actually is or, frankly, whether they’re just good marketing.

Just this week, German think tank NewClimate Institute took 25 of the world’s major corporations to task and found that most are committing to less than they declare in the news. “Net-zero” is only about 40% emissions reductions in many cases and “targets for 2030 fall well short of the ambition required to align with the internationally agreed goals of the Paris Agreement and avoid the most damaging effects of climate change,” reads the “Corporate Climate Responsibility Monitor 2022″ the think tank published this week.

As AFN’s own Wolf of Wheat Street recently said, “you shouldn’t make promises you can’t keep in front of journalists…”

Holding companies to account for their commitments is impossible if you can’t keep track of them, however. So as we organized ourselves over here at AFN to better enable us to check in with companies at reasonable junctures, we thought we would publish a list of agrifood corporate climate commitments to help our readers also keep track — and perhaps encourage them to also hold these companies accountable.

We’ll update it frequently as more companies join the list and as climate commitments evolve. 

This list is unlikely exhaustive. We welcome suggestions of agrifood corporate climate commitments we may have missed or not yet heard about. Send me a note here.

 Company  Key commitment  First announced
 AB InBev  2025: 35% GHG reduction

2040: Net zero

 Addo Food Group  2035: Net zero  2021
 Arla Foods  2030: 63% Scope 1+2 GHG emissions reduction  2021
 Bacardi
 2025: 50% Scope 1+2 GHG emissions reduction;   20% Scope 3 reduction
 2018
 Barilla  2030: 25% Scope 1+2 GHG emissions reduction;   26% Scope 3  2019
 Cargill  2030: 30% reduction per ton of product sold

2050: Net zero

 2019
 Carlsberg  2030: Net zero from breweries; 30% emissions   reduction across entire value chain  2017
 Carrefour  2040: Net zero  2020
 Chipotle  2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3 GHG emissions   reduction  2021
 Chiquita  2030: 30% Scope 1+2 GHG emissions reduction  2021
 Conagra Brands, Inc.  2030: 25% Scope 1+2; 20% Scope 3 per metric   ton of material  2020
 Coop Sverige AB  2026: 50% Scope 1+2; 25% Scope 3  2019
 Dairy Farmers of America  2030: 30% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction  2020
 Danone  2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction

2050 Net zero

 2017
 Dole
 2030: 30% emissions reduction in “group-   wide”marketplace net zero from Dole-owned   farms
 2020
 Domino’s
 2035: 67% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 40%   Scope 3
 2050: Net zero
 2022
 DSM  2030: 20% GHG emissions reduction  2018
 Fresh Del Monte
 2030: 12.3% Scope 3 emissions reduction
 2035: 27.5% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction
 2020
 General Mills  2030: 30% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction   2050: Net zero  2020
 Grupo Bimbo  2050: Net zero  2021
 Heineken
 2030: 90% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 21%   Scope 3 reduction
 2040: Net zero
 2018
 Hilton Food Group  2030: 25% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction;   12.3%  Scope 3 reduction  2021
 Kellogg Company  2030: 47% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 20%   Scope 3 reduction  2015
 Keurig Dr Pepper  2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 15%   Scope 3 reduction  2019
 Maple Leaf Foods   Inc.  2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30%   Scope 3 reduction  2019
 Mars  2050: 67% Scope 1+2+3  2017
 McCain Foods Limited  2030: 52% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 31%   Scope 3 reduction  2021
 McCormick & Company
 2025: 20% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction
 2030: 16% Scope 3 reduction
 2019
 McDonald’s  2050: Net zero  2021
 Moët Hennessy  2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction  2021
 Molson Coors Brewing  2025: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction  2019
 Mondelez International  2025: 10% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction  2020
 Nestlé
 2025: 20% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction
 2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3
 2050: Net zero
 2020
 Panera  2050: “Climate positive”  2021
 PepsiCo

 2030: 75% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 40%   Scope 1+2 emissions reduction

 2021
 Pernod Ricard  2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction  2019
 Pilgrim’s Pride  2030: 30% Scope 1 + 2 emissions reduction

2040: Net zero

 2021
 Restaurant Brands   International  2030: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction

2050: Net zero

 2021
 Sainsbury’s
 2030: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30%   Scope 3 reduction
 2040: Net zero in its own operations
 2020
 Smithfield Foods
 2030: Net zero in US company-owned   operations; 30% GHG emissions reduction   across entire domestic supply chain
 2050: Net zero
 2020
 Sodexo  2025: 34% carbon emissions reduction

2045: Net zero in UK & Ireland

 2019
 Starbucks  2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction  2021
 Stonyfield  2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30%   Scope 3  2019
 Suntory Beverage & Food
 2030: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30%   Scope 3 2050: Net zero
 2021
 Sysco  2030: 27.5% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction  2021
 Target  2040: Net zero  2019
 Tesco
 2025: 60% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction 2030:   17% Scope 3
 2035: Net zero for its own operations
 2017
 The Coca-Cola Company  2040: Net zero  2021
 The Hershey Company  2030: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 25%   Scope 3  2021
 The J.M. Smucker   Company  2030: 28% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 22%   Scope 3  2021
 The Southern Co-operative  2030: 50% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 17%   Scope 3  2021
 Tyson Foods, Inc.
 2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30%   per ton of finished meat for poultry, port, and   beef Scope 3
 2018
 Unilever  2025: Net zero Scope 1+2

2039 Net zero

 2010
 Walmart
 2025: 35% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction 2030:   60% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction
 2040: Net zero
 2016
 Wendy’s  Setting science-based targets by end of 2023  2021
 Yum Brands  2030: 46% emissions reduction

2050: Net zero

 2021

 

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