Nestlé and iQ Renew partner on soft plastic recycling in resource recovery trial

Nestlé and Australian recycler iQ Renew have announced a trial which aims to see soft plastics collected from over 100,000 homes through kerbside recycling and diverted from landfill.

With increasing consumer demand for improved recycling, the trial aims to find a way to collect, sort and process soft plastics that can be broadly adopted.

iQ Renew CEO Danial Gallagher said there is an opportunity in turning soft plastic from a waste to a resource.  Soft plastics not only make up 20% of the volume of Australian household landfill bins, but are also frequently found incorrectly placed in recycling bins.

“Most Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) can’t separate soft plastic from other items in household recycling, so while soft plastic can be recycled, what we lack is a robust, scalable system to collect and process it using existing kerbside collection,” Gallagher said.

“We’ve designed the trial so that at the front end, it will support householders to pre-sort their soft plastic and get it into a recycling stream, while behind the scenes, we’ll test using the sorted soft plastic as a resource in a range of different manufacturing processes,” he said.

Nestlé Australia CEO, Sandra Martinez, said Nestlé wanted to find sustainable paths to recycle packaging.

“While we are working to make all our packaging recyclable, we know that soft plastics is an area that needs greater focus and collaboration. We need to find ways to drive more recycling here,” Martinez said.

“As Nestlé plans to reduce our virgin plastic use and increase the amount of food grade recycled plastic packaging we use, we need plastic to be collected. Given the low amount of soft plastic collected from consumers today, we hope this trial can unlock the significant potential for soft plastic packaging to become a resource.”

Martinez said Nestlé also wanted to help people to recycle effectively.

“Australians are enthusiastic recyclers and want better recycling systems that take plastic packaging out of landfill. This trial will uncover how households understand soft plastics collection and answer critical questions about how it affects their in-home recycling behaviour. We have a vision for Australia to have a waste free future.”

The project will commence with a pilot of 2000 households, then plans to expand to over 100,000 households later in the year, processing around 750 tonnes of soft plastic that would otherwise be sent to landfill. Locations for the trial are currently under consideration.

Simplifying and integrating the supply chain journey

Consumers’ daily lives revolve around trust. Every day, when peeling an orange, opening a can of baked beans or dining in a favourite restaurant, consumers put their trust in Australia’s food supply chain.

Behind every food and beverage product on the shelf is a supply chain journey that starts with ingredients. The Australian food manufacturing industry is an intricate maze of ingredient and packaging suppliers, most with different supply chain management solutions.

Today, sourcing ingredients without a traceability and food safety protocol invites counterfeit products onto the food chain and an increased risk of contamination. News of unsafe or spoilt food can impact business owner’s livelihoods and the industry’s broader reputation, along with disruption to consumer’s lives.

“To manage ingredient safety and increase the visibility of food ingredients and raw materials in these complex supply chains, a new initiative, the Supply Chain Improvement project, is being implemented using GS1 standards,” said GS1 Australian account director Andrew Steele. “The project’s objective is strengthening integration between the thousands of upstream supply chains in the Australian food manufacturing industry.”

An industry working group has been set up to drive the project using the GS1 global standards for product identification, data capture and data sharing. GS1’s Global Traceability Standard (GTS) is the foremost traceability framework, allowing businesses to track their products in real-time and have end-to-end visibility of the supply chain.

“The group will work to achieve consensus across the industry to improve food safety, deliver efficiencies and reduce costs,” said Steele.

Representatives from Nestlé, Ingham’s, SPC, Lion Dairy and Drinks, Sanitarium, CHR Hansen, Newly Weds Foods, FPC Food Plastics, Labelmakers, Matthews Australasia and Visy Industries make up the group.

The ability for companies to capture material movements from ‘paddock-to-plate’ provides data integrity and timeliness from receipt to delivery, with traceability back to the source. Through automation, many of the manual processes are eliminated and businesses can be proactive with inventory management and handling systems.

“As a food and beverage business it’s critical for us from a food safety perspective to be able to track ingredients all the way back to the origin,” said SPC’s national logistics manager, Christian Lecompte.

Also critical to business is the capability to support information and production flow within existing systems for integrated supply chains. The project has the capacity to eliminate waste within an organisation’s value stream, reduce non-value-added tasks and ensure cost-effective solutions for customers, leading to a ‘right-first-time’ approach for all deliveries.

“One of the things we found we could do to be more efficient was to look at opportunities to be able to electronically track all the product ingredients throughout the production cycle – how we identify a product coming into the warehouses, how we receipt goods, how we put our goods away, how we manage our inventory and how we deal with our suppliers,” said Lecompte.

The adoption of GS1 standards as the common language for the identification, data capture and data sharing will enable automation of key ingredient sourcing, and traceability between ingredient suppliers and food manufacturers. Using GS1 standards for upstream integration goes well beyond minimum standards and allows businesses to translate their internal processes and approaches into the one common language that all trading partners can use and understand, without having to translate data formats across different supply chain management systems. This is the key as Steele believes interoperability is essential to the future of data sharing.

“Establishing international standards to ensure transparency across the supply chain can help lower existing barriers to the exchange of data between suppliers, trading partners and consumers,” he said.

The Supply Chain Improvement Project has the potential to deliver many benefits to industry, including increased visibility of food ingredients and raw materials, unique identification and traceability to improve food safety, and reduced costs with automated business transactions.

Nestle Australia’s head of digital supply chain, Mandeep Sodhi pointed out the key to the project’s success. “By having consensus across the industry on how to interconnect electronically and exchange critical operational data, we can realise cost-effective solutions across the end-to-end – from manufacturers, to suppliers, to customers – everyone benefits from this improvement in standardisation,” he said.

Looking ahead, the industry working group is encouraging all upstream businesses to adopt the food safety and traceability protocol using GS1 standards.

“With an industry-wide solution in place, your trading partners will have more visibility of your products across the supply chain,” said Steele.

Nestlé announces collaboration with Burcon and Merit for plant-based ingredients

Néstle has announced a collaboration with Burcon and Merit, two key players in the development and production of high-quality plant proteins. This partnership will enable Nestlé to further accelerate the development of nutritious and great-tasting, plant-based meat and dairy alternatives with a favorable environmental footprint.

The partnership combines Nestlé’s expertise in the development, production and commercialization of plant-based foods and beverages with Burcon’s proprietary plant protein extraction and purification technology, while leveraging Merit’s state-of-the-art plant protein production capabilities.

“Developing nutritious and great-tasting plant-based meat and dairy alternatives requires access to tasty, nutritious and sustainable raw materials as well as proprietary manufacturing technology,” says Stefan Palzer, Nestlé Chief Technology Officer. “The partnership with Burcon and Merit will give us access to unique expertise and a new range of high-quality ingredients for plant-based food and beverages.”

Globally, Nestlé has around 300 R&D scientists, engineers and product developers located in 8 R&D centers that are dedicated to the research and development of plant-based products. To complement its internal capabilities, the company also strategically collaborates with researchers, suppliers, start-ups and various other innovation partners.

Nestlé’s plant-based product range includes pea, soy- and wheat-based burger patties, sausages, mince meat, chicken filets and various prepared dishes. The company also developed pea and oat-based dairy alternatives, almond-, coconut- and oat-based creamers, plant-based coffee mixes as well as a range of non-dairy ice creams. It also recently announced its plans to launch vegan alternatives to cheese and bacon, designed to complement its existing plant-based burger patties.

Burcon Nutrascience is a global technology company with a portfolio of patents related to composition, application, and manufacturing of novel plant-based proteins derived from pea, canola, soy, hemp, sunflower seed and various other crops.

Nestlé creates market for food-grade recycled plastics

Nestlé has announced that it will invest up to $3 billion to lead the shift from virgin plastics to food-grade recycled plastics and to accelerate the development of innovative sustainable packaging solutions.

Building on its 2018 commitment to make 100 per cent of its packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025, Nestlé will reduce its use of virgin plastics by one third in the same period whilst working with others to advance the circular economy and endeavor to clean up plastic waste from oceans, lakes and rivers.

Food quality and safety are paramount, and packaging plays a major role in assuring this. Most plastics are difficult to recycle for food packaging, leading to a limited supply of food-grade recycled plastics. To create a market, Nestlé is therefore committed to sourcing up to two million metric tons of food-grade recycled plastics and allocating more than $2.5 billion to pay a premium for these materials between now and 2025. Nestlé will seek operational efficiencies to keep this initiative earnings neutral.

READ MORE: Néstle commits to zero net emissions by 2050

Packaging innovation, including new materials, refill systems and recycling solutions, is another key challenge on the path towards a waste-free future. In addition to its significant inhouse research through the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences, the company will launch a $375 million sustainable packaging venture fund to invest in start-up companies that focus on these areas.

These two initiatives come in addition to Nestlé’s major ongoing efforts in research, sourcing and manufacturing to make its packaging recyclable or reusable and contribute to its goal to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. As part of the company’s packaging commitment and to increase transparency, Nestlé will continue to outline further initiatives and provide regular progress updates.

“No plastic should end up in landfill or as litter,” said Mark Schneider, CEO of Nestlé. “Making recycled plastics safe for food is an enormous challenge for our industry. That is why in addition to minimizing plastics use and collecting waste, we want to close the loop and make more plastics infinitely recyclable. We are taking bold steps to create a wider market for food-grade recycled plastics and boost innovation in the packaging industry. We welcome others to join us on this journey.”

“We are pleased to see Nestlé commit a $3 billion investment toward creating a circular economy for plastics, alongside a reduction of its use of virgin plastic in packaging by one third by 2025. By eliminating the plastics we don’t need, innovating in areas like reuse models and new materials, and circulating the plastics we do need — also in more challenging food grade applications — we can create an economy where plastic never becomes waste. Achieving the commitments announced today will significantly contribute towards realizing this vision,” said Andrew Morlet, CEO, Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

Néstle recall roll-ups over metal fears

Nestlé Australia today announced the immediate recall of certain batches of Uncle Tobys Roll-Ups due to the possible presence of small metal fragments.

The affected products are being recalled because an ingredient supplier has advised Nestlé that equipment failure in their facility has led to the possible presence of small metal fragments in an ingredient supplied to Nestlé used to manufacture the products.

The products being recalled are:

Uncle Tobys Roll-Ups Passionfruit, Rainbow Berry,  Rainbow Fruit Salad and Funprints Strawberry, all of which were produced between 29th June and 14th July.

General Manager Snacks, Susan Catania, said these batches have been sold in major, independent and online retailers since early December.

READ MORE: Barcode trial promises to cut product recalls

“If you have purchased any of these products, please do not consume it, but return it to the place of purchase for a full refund,” Catania said.

Catania confirmed that other batches and products are not affected, and that Nestlé had not received any complaints from consumers regarding metal in Uncle Tobys Roll-Ups.

“As soon as we were made aware of the issue we made contact with authorities to conduct a recall and notified all relevant retailers,” Ms Catania said.

Food products containing foreign matter may cause illness or injury to consumers. Anyone who is concerned about their health should seek medical advice.

Consumers seeking more information can contact Nestlé on 1800 152 126

Why making a profit is no longer enough for big brands

When you’re one of the world’s largest confectionery brands, you’re under the microscope. We live in a time where a more discerning, informed public are not only interested in the products a company is producing, but how they are making them – where are they sourcing their ingredients? What sort of packaging are they using? What are the products nutritional health benefits?

It’s not lost on Nestlé’s Oceania director of eBusiness, strategy and marketing, Martin Brown. It’s his job to not only sell the company’s message in the local environment, but make sure it is adhering to the best practices he and other strategists have put in place.

Brown knows that the younger consumers are the ones driving the conversation – and not only in terms of whether a product tastes good or not.

“If you look at the diversity of our population and the expectations, it is the younger consumers that are shaping our industry,” said Brown. “They are shaping a couple of key forces that are really important for us to consider. One is, they make choices on brands and consumption based on beliefs. They’re very much looking at the actions of the brand – what is behind the brand – particularly with the supply chain.”

No longer is it good enough to make a great tasting product under the banner of a worldwide known and trusted brand. A lot of food and beverage companies – and those in peripheral arenas like packaging – are employing people whose sole purpose within the conglomerate’s structure is to look after sustainability and traceability. This is because companies like Nestle know that social media and other modern trends have a huge influence on purchasing decisions.

Nestlé is looking at a variety of ways of making sure that it not only provides products from sustainable sources and can be traced back to the farm, but it is also taking steps to reduce its carbon footprint.

“As a company that operates 10 factories in the region, we have plenty of scope to influence that commitment. Part of those commitments is accelerating the use of renewable energy,” said Brown. “For instance, we use the spent coffee grounds in our Gympie factory as fuel to drive the energy in that factory.

“At our Smithtown factory, which is the home of Milo, we use sawdust from the local timber industry to power 85 per cent of the energy in that plant. These are good examples of clever renewable energy sources. We’re also committed across all of those operations to have zero waste to landfill by 2020 and are pretty close to achieving that.”

Globally, Nestlé has signed up to the RE100, which is a group of companies that have pledged to use 100 per cent renewable energy. The accord means that Nestlé has agreed to zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 as part of the pledge to hold to the 1.5˚C maximum temperature increase through climate change.

When it comes to another hot-button issue for consumers – recyclability – Nestlé is committed to meeting its 2025 responsibility of its packaging being reusable or recyclable. Currently, 50 per cent of the materials it uses is recyclable, while 40 per cent is partially recyclable.

“We’re going to focus first on the 10 per cent that is non-recyclable,” said Brown. “We’ve got a negative list of materials that we are removing from all of our packaging. The cardboard is fine, however not all of the substrates used in flexible packaging are recyclable.

We have multi-layers of material that are not recyclable. That’s where we need to find solutions.”

These solutions will not appear out of thin air. Investment is needed, and Nestlé doesn’t mind putting its hat in the ring when it comes to spending money to find the answers that will lead to more sustainable packaging. Brown also realises that there are other issues that need to be addressed with packaging – recyclability is but one aspect.

“This is where the science comes in with regard to coming up with new packaging solutions because they’re not available right now,” said Brown. “We’ve invested in the Nestlé Institute of Packaging to work with the science community and the rest of the packaging community to develop novel solutions that are fully recyclable and/or compostable. These will be the replacement solutions for that 10 per cent non-recyclable packaging.

“If we can come up with solutions that meet consumer expectations of quality, tamper-proof food safety, and is relevant in a category that can fully eliminate packaging, that would be a good thing. We’re trialling those solutions already.”

Another hot topic is food trends. Two that have caught the eye of Nestle’s hierarchy are confectionery products with less sugar [see box story Satisfying the Sweet Tooth], and plant-based proteins. Again, it is the younger consumer driving the issue. In the case of the latter, it is not about getting rid of meat altogether, but about replacing one or two meals a week with plant-based proteins. Brown thinks there are many reasons for the growing trend.

“There’s health reasons,” he said. “They may also connect the dots between meat and greenhouse gas emissions. Ultimately, for them, it might be about living in a more sustainable environment. With our Harvest Gourmet products, and along with the rest of the plant protein industry, we are providing alternatives that make that transition seamless in a way that is pretty surprising. We think that it is going to grow quickly as a market opportunity.”

Brown said that Nestlé is looking to develop a range of meat alternatives – from chicken breasts to mince – that will give customers versatile options for food consumption. Then there are dairy alternatives, too.

“You can expect we will bring plant-based dairy options across a range of our beverage products,” he said. “We’ve seen that it is becoming popular in the way people are adopting plant-based milks into their out of home coffee consumption. That is definitely an opportunity for in-home coffee consumption as well.”

And what about another, albeit minor, trend of insect-based proteins? Brown acknowledges that it is an idea the company might look at in the future, but there is nothing in the pipeline at the moment.

“We’re aware of insect-based proteins. They’re probably not mainstream enough for us to look at yet,” he said. “We’re blessed at being in a pretty resource-rich environment so we’re not quite yet at the insect level. It’s an imaginative solution, which is arguable very sustainable and we should never rule it out.”

Brown is confident that Nestlé is on target to not only continue meeting the needs of its traditional consumers, but also encompass new food technologies and trends that will be entering the food chain over the next 5 to 10 years. It is not only about keeping the taste great, but making sure the brand keeps its reputation.

“As we continue to offer more choice and lift the nutritional credentials of all our products, it is important to remember that any change has to be underpinned by great taste. And with that, will come trust – something that is very important to any brand like Nestlé.”

Social responsibility
Chocolate and coffee – two items that tick all the endorphin boxes when consumed. Debating traceability of products, sustainability in packaging, and energy efficiencies during the production process are all well and good, but what’s the point if the key ingredients no longer exist? No ingredients means no products. Coffee beans and cocoa plants are grown in a narrow window of land on the equator. The main producers are in sub-Sahara African and the equatorial climate of South America. A recent article in Business Insider titled Chocolate is on track to go extinct in 40 years, concentrated on how the aforementioned strip of land is set to shrink due to climate change. Cacao plants, which product the cocoa for chocolate, need certain temperatures to grow and that is starting to change. However, that is not the main issue, because if humanity does get to reverse the more undesirable effects of climate change, there is another more urgent problem – will there be cocoa farmers to produce the crop?

It is an issue that the likes of Nestlé and Mars are taking head on. They realise without cocoa, a large portion of their business is affected. It is with this in mind that Nestlé’s Martin Brown explains why the company’s attitude towards its primary producers is holistic. The company knows that trying to buy the biggest amount of cocoa at the cheapest price possible is short-sighted. Long-term viability is needed and is something that the company champions. With more than 70 per cent of the world’s cocoa being produced on two million small farms in Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, logistics can be challenging.

“The reality is that a lot of these communities are in undeveloped economies and live in challenged social spaces, so we have to help them resolve things such as unsafe work practices,” said Brown. “They’re complicated problems to solve that need total integration by the government across all industries.”

Brown said that in 2014 Nestlé was one of the first major companies in Australia to use 100 per cent sustainable cocoa. He said the company is committed to paying a premium to all farmers it buys through. The company also likes to make sure its suppliers are in compliance when it comes to eliminating unsafe child labour work practices and ensuring children go to school.

“We are also eliminating the use of unsafe pesticides,” said Brown. “We’ve built schools in farming communities to ensure that their kids are getting educated. We’ve distributed new cocoa plants. We’ve renewed the cocoa plantations to drive productivity in their farms. We’ve educated farmers on how to look after their farms better.”

A lot of actions undertaken by food conglomerates are driven by consumer expectations. However, Brown also knows that goodwill in these communities goes a long way. Because if climate change does get addressed, and the standard of living is accelerated, there are other issues that will also need addressing. Only collaboration between the farmers and businesses will solve them.

“There are a numbers of reasons why the cocoa supply has been under threat,” said Brown. “First, cacao trees are at their most productive between 2-20 years of age. If they are not renewed and the tree is not continuously replenished, productivity drops, and drops away sharply.”

Next, if the farming methods to optimise the layout of a farm – from ventilation between trees, right fertilisation methods, pruning and cropping of the trees – isn’t maintained, the productivity of the tree is reduced. Then there is the issue whereby farmers might not grow the crop anymore because they are not getting the economic outcome of it that another crop might provide.

“Another reason why you might have a compromised future with the cocoa crop is that the next generation don’t want to farm,” said Brown. “The next generation might leave farm communities because the conditions are just not good enough. They are not liveable and those meant to be taking over the farm have higher expectations of quality of life. And that should be everyone’s expectation – that the next generation gets to lead a higher quality of life or has the opportunity.”

Nestlé introduces the new Starbucks by Nespresso coffee capsules range

Nestlé has announced the launch of a new range of Starbucks coffee capsules. These are the first Starbucks coffee products developed using Nespresso proprietary coffee and system technology and consistof six signature flavours that consumers can enjoy in the comfort of their own home.

This launch came after the two companies, Nestlé and Starbucks, joined forces to create aglobal coffee alliance in August last year. With the launch of the new Starbucks by Nespressorange, for the first time Kiwi coffee lovers will create the same Starbucks coffee they love froma café in their home. They will be able to access those premium and exciting coffee products from their local supermarket.

“We are committed to continuous innovation to provide Kiwis with new and exciting ways to enjoy coffee at home,” said Nestlé Oceania director of e-Business, strategy and marketing, Martin Brown. “We are proud to be working with Starbucks, a global coffee brand that shares our passion for quality coffee and craftsmanship, to offer coffee drinkers an at-home solution that meets their discerning quality expectations whilst being conveniently accessible at their local supermarket.”

The new range of Starbucks by Nespresso capsules combine Nestlé’s coffee and system know-how with the Starbucks’ coffee flavours and house blends. The range includes six signature flavours, ranging from Starbucks blends and single-origin coffees, all made from 100 per cent arabica coffee, ethically sourced from farmers in the world’s premier coffee-growing regions.

“For years, we have offered Starbucks’ famous roasts through our in-store coffee house experience,” said CEO of Starbucks New Zealand, Charles Belcher. “Through our partnership with Nestlé, we are excited to be taking the first step to open this premium experience up to all Kiwis, allowing them to make their favourite Starbucks recipes at home using their Nespresso machine.”

Nestlé expands plant-based burger range

Nestlé is expanding its plant-based food range in the US and Switzerland.

The launches come just days after Nestlé announced its ambition to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, including by offering more plant-based food and beverages.

In both countries, Nestlé is launching plant-based burgers and grounds, with ingredients and recipes customised to meet local tastes. All the products look and cook like raw beef and provide a juicy, meat-like taste and texture.

In the United States, Sweet Earth Foods has announced the launch of their newest products, the Awesome Burger and Awesome Grounds. Both deliver on the taste and texture of beef with the environmental and nutritional benefits offered by plant-based proteins.

READ MORE: Plant-based protein worth $25 billion by 2030

The Awesome Burger is made with yellow pea protein, resulting in a burger that is high in protein and fiber. Sweet Earth’s Awesome Grounds will provide the same plant-based protein in a ground version that allows greater flexibility to cook various meals and sides, such as meatballs and tacos. Acquired by Nestlé in 2017, Sweet Earth has over 60 plant-based products in their portfolio.

In Switzerland, Nestlé is introducing its Garden Gourmet Incredible Burger and the new Garden Gourmet Incredible Mince. The two add to the already expanding Garden Gourmet range in Switzerland, which also includes many ‘veggie-centric’ options. The burger is made from soy and wheat protein and the mince from soy protein. Both contain natural plant extracts – beetroot, carrot, and bell pepper – and vegetable fats including chopped coconut oil.

The new Garden Gourmet Incredible Mince is just as versatile and juicy as ground beef. It is easily shapeable, making it perfect to create balls or skewers that can be seasoned to taste. It can also be crumbled up in a pan, for example to make a delicious Bolognese sauce or ‘Chili Sin Carne’.

Nestlé commits to zero net emissions by 2050

Nestlé has announced its ambition to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. It embraces the most ambitious aim of the Paris Agreement, to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C. Ahead of the U.N. Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit this month, Nestlé will sign the ‘Business Ambition for 1.5°C’ pledge.

With this announcement Nestlé is accelerating its climate change efforts. This builds on a decade of work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Over the past four years, Nestlé has aligned its objectives with science-based targets to keep the temperature increase below 2°C. The company is determined to play a leading role in tackling climate change. Over the next two years, it will lay out a time-bound plan including interim targets consistent with the 1.5°C path. Nestlé will review its progress annually to ensure it is on track.

“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,” he added.

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. This includes more plant-based food and beverage options. Nestlé will also look to reformulate its products using more climate-friendly ingredients. Consumer demand for such products is rapidly increasing, and Nestlé’s core strategy is in line with this shift. The company is also moving to 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. This includes improved management of its dairy supply chain. Nestlé will step up efforts to protect forests by replanting trees and enhancing biodiversity. All of these initiatives will help build resilient agricultural communities.
  • Using 100% renewable electricity in Nestlé factories, warehouses, logistics and offices. A third of Nestlé factories (143) are already using 100 per cent renewable electricity. Nestlé will continue to increase the use of energy from renewable sources. This will enable suppliers to invest in new infrastructure such as wind and solar farms.
  • Limiting global warming to 1.5°C requires transformational change across industries, governments and society as a whole. Nestlé will continue its advocacy for government policies to ensure all sectors move faster towards 1.5°C. Supportive legislation could help to reduce barriers to expanding renewable energy markets, incentivize innovation in the agriculture and forestry sectors to capture more carbon, and help to establish carbon pricing.

Nestlé inaugurates packaging research institute

Nestlé has officially inaugurated the Institute of Packaging Sciences, the first-of-its-kind in the food industry. The new Institute enables Nestlé to accelerate its efforts to bring functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions to the market and to address the global challenge of plastic packaging waste.

Speaking at the inauguration, Mark Schneider, Nestlé CEO, said, “Our vision is a world in which none of our packaging ends up in landfill or as litter. To achieve this we introduce reusable packaging solutions and pioneer environmentally friendly packaging materials. Furthermore, we support the development of local recycling infrastructure and deposit schemes to help shape a waste-free world. The Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences enables us to create a strong pipeline of sustainable packaging solutions for Nestlé products across businesses and markets.”

The Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences focuses on a number of science and technology areas, such as refillable or reusable packaging, simplified packaging materials, recycled packaging materials, high-performance barrier papers as well as bio-based, compostable and biodegradable materials.

Stefan Palzer, Nestlé CTO said, “Reducing plastic waste and mitigating climate change effects through cutting-edge technology and product design are a priority for us. Nestlé experts are co-developing and testing new environmentally friendly packaging materials and systems together with our development centres, suppliers, research institutions and start-ups. Located at our Nestlé Research facilities in Lausanne, Switzerland, the Institute also leverages our existing research capabilities in food safety, analytics and food science.”

Commenting on the inauguration, Sander Defruyt, New Plastics Economy Lead at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said: “Nestlé was one of the first companies to sign the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, setting concrete targets to eliminate plastic waste and pollution at the source. It is great to see the world’s largest consumer goods company now increasing its research focus and capacity to deliver on these ambitions.”

Nestlé is already making progress towards its 2025 packaging commitments, and has launched novel packaging solutions. For example, Nestlé packaging experts and suppliers developed products in recyclable paper packaging such as the Nesquik All Natural cocoa powder and the YES! snack bars in under 12 months.

The Institute is part of the company’s fundamental research entity Nestlé Research in Switzerland, reaffirming Nestlé’s commitment to further strengthen the unique Swiss innovation ecosystem.

Speaking at the official opening, Philippe Leuba, State Councilor of the Swiss Canton of Vaud, said: “This new institute will strengthen our Canton as a centre of excellence when it comes to the food value chain and allow the development of innovative packaging solutions that respect the environment and sustainable development. Waste management, a global challenge, will now benefit from an innovation ecosystem in the Canton of Vaud made up of universities as well as research centres from major private sector players such as Nestlé.”

Nestlé announces meat-free burgers

Nestlé will launch their new 100 per cent plant-based burgers later this year.

Wayne England, the head of Nestlé’s food business, said that plant-based products don’t need to mean a compromise on flavour or texture.

“We believe this trend is here to stay, as consumers look at different ways to enjoy and balance their protein intake and lower the environmental footprint of their diets,” he said.

The Garden Gourmet Incredible burger consists of natural protein from soy and wheat, blended with plant extracts including beetroot and carrot. These give the burgers a consistency closer to that of a traditional burger.

Overall there is a trend towards people eating meat-free, with a 600 per cent increase of consumers in the US identifying as vegan from 2014 to 2017. Australia follows suit and now has more than two million habitants that live meat-free.

The Garden Gourmet Incredible Burger will launch in Europe from April this year and a similar raw plant-based burger will roll out in the United States late 2019 under the Sweet Earth brand.

Nestlé to increase the number of women in senior executive positions

Nestlé today laid out an action plan to increase the number of women in senior executive positions globally. This underscores Nestlé’s commitment to providing equal opportunities for everyone at the company.

Nestlé has made progress in recent years increasing the number of women in managerial positions. Today, 43 per cent of these roles are held by women. With its Gender Balance Acceleration Plan, Nestlé will now put further emphasis on increasing the proportion of women in the group’s top 200 senior executive positions from around 20 per cent currently to 30% by 2022. This is another step in Nestlé’s journey towards gender parity.

Mark Schneider, Nestlé CEO, said: “It is simply the right thing to do. We believe that a more diverse workforce with more women at the top will reinforce our inclusive culture and make Nestlé an even better company. We are setting measurable goals to hold ourselves accountable. We know that improving gender balance will lead to better decisions, stronger innovation and higher employee satisfaction.”

Nestlé has embedded gender balance in all its Human Resources practices. The company was recently included in the 2019 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI). Nestlé is now building on this momentum and setting new goals to drive further action.

The Gender Balance Acceleration Plan includes the following specific actions:

  • Supporting all managers to foster an inclusive workplace and ensuring that they are trained on unconscious bias;
  • Encouraging the use of Nestlé’s paid parental leave program and flexible work policies in place in all Nestlé operating companies;
  • Enhancing mentoring and sponsorship programs to prepare high-potential women for senior executive positions;
  • Hiring and promoting more women in senior executive positions;
  • Reviewing results with senior leaders to promote gender balance and ensure progress;
  • Continuing our efforts to champion equal pay and eliminate conditions that create gender pay gaps;
  • Reporting progress in Nestlé’s annual Creating Shared Value report.

“The Nestlé Gender Balance Acceleration Plan strengthens our existing commitment to enhance gender balance in our workforce. We are confident that everyone, men and women, will play a key role in advancing gender equality and creating a better place to work,” said Béatrice Guillaume-Grabisch, Executive Vice President, Head of Group Human Resources and Business Services.

Gender balance is a key component of Nestlé’s approach to diversity and inclusion. This is an integral part of the company’s culture and is one of the ways Nestlé brings its purpose and values to life

How to simplify the supply chain journey

Consumers’ daily lives revolve around trust. Every day, when peeling an orange, opening a can of baked beans or dining in a favourite restaurant, consumers put their trust in Australia’s food supply chain.

Behind every food and beverage product on the shelf is a supply chain journey that starts with ingredients. The Australian food manufacturing industry is an intricate maze of ingredient and packaging suppliers that have different supply chain management solutions.

Sourcing ingredients without a traceability and food safety protocol today invites counterfeit products onto the food chain and increases the risk of contamination. News of unsafe or spoilt food can impact business owners’ livelihoods and the industry’s broader reputation, and causes significant disruption to consumers’ lives.

“To manage ingredient safety and increase the visibility of food ingredients and raw materials in these complex supply chains, a new initiative, the Supply Chain Improvement Project, is being implemented using GS1 standards,” said Steele. “The project’s objective is strengthening integration between the thousands of upstream supply chains in the Australian food manufacturing industry.”

An industry working group has been set up to drive the project using the GS1 global standards for product identification, data capture and data sharing. GS1’s Global Traceability Standard (GTS) is the foremost traceability framework, allowing businesses to track their products in real-time and have end-to-end visibility of the supply chain.
“The group will work to achieve consensus across the industry to improve food safety, deliver efficiencies and reduce costs,” said Steele.

Representatives from Nestlé, Ingham’s, SPC, Lion Dairy and Drinks, Sanitarium, CHR Hansen, Newly Weds Foods, FPC Food Plastics, Labelmakers, Matthews Australasia and Visy Industries make up the group.

The ability for companies to capture material movements from “paddock to plate” provides data integrity and timeliness from receipt to delivery, with traceability back to the source. Through automation, many of the manual processes are eliminated and businesses can be proactive with inventory management and handling systems.
“As a food and beverage business it’s critical for us from a food safety perspective to be able to track ingredients all the way back to the origin,” said SPC’s national logistics manager, Christian Lecompte.

Also critical to business is the capability to support information and production flow within existing systems for integrated supply chains. The project has the capacity to eliminate waste within an organisation’s value stream, reduce non-value-added tasks and ensure cost-effective solutions for customers, leading to a “right-first-time” approach for all deliveries.

“One of the things we found we could do to be more efficient was to look at opportunities to be able to electronically track all the product ingredients throughout the production cycle – how we identify a product coming into the warehouses, how we receipt goods, how we put our goods away, how we manage our inventory and how we deal with our suppliers,” said Lecompte.

The adoption of GS1 standards as the common language for identification, data capture and data sharing will enable automation of key ingredient sourcing and traceability between ingredient suppliers and food manufacturers.

Using GS1 standards for upstream integration goes well beyond minimum standards. It allows businesses to translate their internal processes and approaches into the one common language that all trading partners can use and understand, without having to translate data formats across different supply chain management systems.

This is the key, as Steele believes interoperability is essential to the future of data sharing. “Establishing international standards to ensure transparency across the supply chain can help lower existing barriers to the exchange of data between suppliers, trading partners and consumers,” he said.

The Supply Chain Improvement Project has the potential to deliver many benefits to industry, including increased visibility of food ingredients and raw materials, unique identification and traceability to improve food safety, and reduced costs with automated business transactions.

Nestlé Australia’s eBusiness manager, Mandeep Sodhi pointed out the key to the project’s success.

“By having consensus across the industry on how to interconnect electronically and exchange critical operational data, we can realise cost-effective solutions across the end-to-end – from manufacturers, to suppliers, to customers. Everyone benefits from this improvement in standardisation,” he said.

Looking ahead, the industry working group is encouraging all upstream businesses to adopt the food safety and traceability protocol using GS1 standards.

“With an industry-wide solution in place, your trading partners will have more visibility of your products across the supply chain,” said Steele.

New technology to help fight iron deficiency

Nestlé has acquired a novel technology developed by New Zealand scientists that will enable it to address one of the world’s most widespread nutritional deficiencies.

The unique technology, Ferri Pro, was developed to address nutritional iron deficiency, without adversely affecting the taste of food and beverages by researchers at the Riddet Institute Centre of Research Excellence (CoRE), Massey University.

“We developed the technology to help to address the world’s most important nutritional deficiency, as over 1.6 billion people are suffering from iron deficiency anaemia. However, our goal was to not only address iron deficiency, but to address it without impacting product quality,” said Harjinder Singh, director of the Institute and distinguished professor, who also led the research team at Massey University.

According to the World Health Organisation, women and children are particularly at risk for iron deficiency, and if left untreated it can cause serious mental and physical harm.

To help reach vulnerable groups such as school-age children and expectant mothers, Nestlé fortifies affordable foods and beverages, like condiments and noodles, cereals and children’s milks. The acquisition of this technology will enable it to continue to make progress towards its efforts to reach millions of children and families.

“At Nestlé we believe that we have a key role to play in support of global efforts to tackle the global burden of micronutrient deficiencies. Through this collaboration with Massey University, we will have access to an innovative technology that enables us to effectively fortify our foods and beverages without compromising the quality and taste,” said Petra Klassen Wigger, head of nutrition, health and wellness at Nestlé Research.

Nestlé takes top spot in first US Access to Nutrition Index

Nestlé has ranked highest in the first-ever US-focused Access to Nutrition Index, which evaluates the policies, practices and product portfolios of ten food and beverage companies.

This follows the release of the global index earlier this year, in which Nestlé also placed first.

Nestlé’s performance in the global and US indices shows its contribution to tackling the pressing challenges of obesity and undernutrition globally and in the US.

The index highlights Nestlé’s continuous improvement of its product portfolio through reformulating its foods, acquiring brands that delight consumers and reflect their evolving approach to wellness, and delivering and promoting healthy hydration.

READ: PepsiCo expands plant-based range with Health Warrior acquisition

It also notes that Nestlé has an industry-leading Parent Support Policy that provides generous paid parental leave.

Nestlé vice president for nutrition health and wellness, Wendy Johnson, said the company is proud that Access to Nutrition Index recognises its progress meet nutrition commitments, to transparently communicate with consumers, and to support the wellness of its employees.

“As a business, our growth strategy is driven by a deep focus on how consumers are evolving, which makes our focus on nutrition and wellness ever more relevant.

“We will conduct a full review of [Access to Nutrition Index’s] assessment of our US practices to determine areas where we can further evolve and strengthen our approach,” said Johnson.

Nestlé is working to meet consumers’ needs across a diverse product portfolio – for every part of the day and every stage of life.

It is working to improve the profile of its products, promote healthy hydration and healthy lifestyles.

The company demonstrates its commitment to nutrition and health through initiatives like Nestlé for Healthier Kids, with a global goal of helping 50 million children worldwide live healthier lives by 2030.

In the US, Nestlé supports this initiative by helping to provide nutrition education for parents of young children through its Start Healthy, Stay Healthy program, which focuses on the first 1,000 days.

The United States is Nestlé S.A.’s largest market with combined product sales in the United States totaling more than $27 billion in 2017.

Nestlé supports global commitment to reduce plastic waste

Nestlé has joined forces with other businesses and governments in signing the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, known as the Global Commitment, at the Our Ocean Conference in Bali, Indonesia.

The Global Commitment is an initiative of The Ellen MacArthur Foundation and UN Environment.

It aims to rethink the future of plastics by applying the principles of circular economy, in which plastics never become waste.

The Global Commitment represents a framework to work collectively on solutions that address the root causes of plastics waste and pollution.

READ: Nestlé pledges increase in recycled plastics in the European Union

Nestlé CEO Mark Schneider said the Global Commitment is a step-change that is urgently needed in order to move from a linear to a circular economy.

“We want to act and lead by example. We will do our part to ensure that none of our packaging, including plastics, ends up in the natural environment,” said Schneider.

Nestlé recognises the need for preventing packaging material ending up as waste.

This is the rationale behind the company’s goal to make 100 per cent of its packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025.

To achieve this goal, Nestlé has embarked on several research and development projects.

One of them is the NaturAll Bottle Alliance, which aims to develop 100 per cent bio-based PET to be used for its water business.

Nestlé also plays a role in the development of well-functioning collection, sorting and recycling schemes across the countries where it operates.

Nestlé and Worldchefs introduce healthier eating to thousands of kids

Nestlé and Worldchefs aim to surpass their 2017 campaign to bring healthier food to kids, which reached more than 37,000 children in 56 countries.

They hope to do this with the help of 4,000 chefs from Worldchefs and Nestlé Professional who each year contribute their time and energy to an educationally focused culinary event.

Since its creation by chef Dr Bill Gallagher in 2004, Worldchefs has committed to celebrating the profession and to transfer culinary knowledge and skills with a sense of pride and commitment to the future.

This year’s activities take place in late October and comprise a host of fun-filled healthy eating workshops for children in diverse communities around the globe.

READ: Nestlé launches Milo with 25 per cent less sugar in Indonesia

Chef Joanna Ochniak said the theme this year – Healthy Foods for Growing Up – is intended to encourage kids to think about what they would like to be when they grow up, and how healthy eating today can help them get there.

“This is a life-lesson that we as chefs are passionate about passing down to the next generation of culinary professionals and home cooks,” said Ochniak.

Rochelle Schaetzl, from Nestlé Professional said the Nestlé for Healthier Kids programme was established as part of a commitment to improve nutrition for children.

“Through this dynamic International Chefs Day collaboration with Worldchefs, we are making great strides towards helping children to eat better, firmly establishing healthy food habits and diets as they grow up,” said Schaetzl.

In addition, in line with its commitment to provide better nutritional ingredients for foodservice professionals, Nestlé Professional has launched its chef’s pantry initiative.

As part of this, all products and ingredients Nestlé sells to out-of-home professionals are being reviewed.

Nestlé Professional’s ambition is to simplify recipes and use the same ingredients that chefs stock in their own kitchen pantries.

Product renovations will focus on eliminating unfamiliar ingredients and improving nutritional value, addressing the evolving requirements of chefs and of their consumers.

This includes reducing salt, sugar and saturated fats.

The World Association of Chefs’ Societies, known as Worldchefs, is a non-political professional organisation, dedicated to maintaining and improving the culinary standards of global cuisines.

It accomplishes these goals through education, training and professional development of its members.

As an authority and opinion leader on food, Worldchefs represents a global voice on all issues related to the culinary profession.

 

Nestlé pledges increase in recycled plastics in the European Union

Nestlé is making a significant increase in the amount of recycled plastics it uses in some of its packaging in the European Union.

By 2025, bottles, PET layer in laminates, caps on glass jars and tins, trays for meat products and shrink films for display trays will all contain at least between 25 per cent and 50 per cent recycled material, depending on the packaging type.

The pledge comes following Nestlé’s global packaging ambition, announced in April this year, where the company aims to make 100 per cent of its packaging recyclable or re-usable by 2025.

Nestlé CEO for Zone Europe, Middle East and North Africa Marco Settembri said he was proud that the company was already taking first concrete steps to achieve its packaging ambitions.

READ: Nestlé aims to accelerate pace towards equal pay for equal work

“Nestlé supports the plastics strategy of the European Union.

“We share the vision that no plastic packaging ends up in the environment. Recyclable packaging, good recycling infrastructure and more use of recycled material will help us close the loop,” said Settembri.

PET bottles will contain at least 25 per cent rPET (Polyethylene terephthalate).

By 2025 the PET layer in the respective laminates will contain 25 per cent rPET.

By 2025 the caps on Nestlé’s glass jars and tins will contain 30 per cent rPP (recycled Polypropylene).

By 2025 the trays for our meat products will contain 50 per cent rPET.

By 2025 the shrink films for display trays will contain 50 per cent rPE (recycled Polyethylene).

Nestlé’s announcement contributes to the voluntary pledging exercise on recycled content by the European Commission.

 

Nestlé aims to accelerate pace towards equal pay for equal work

Nestlé has pledged to help accelerate the pace towards equal pay for equal work, at an event in the margins of the UN General Assembly in New York.

The main objective of the event is to build a consortium of committed partners to accelerate the pace in closing the gender pay gap and achieving equal pay, in line with target 8.5 of the UN Sustainable Development goals.

The event, held on the 27th of September, was organised by the Equal Pay International Coalition, led by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), United Nations Women, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Christian Frutiger, global head of public affairs, made the pledge on behalf of Nestlé.

READ: PepsiCO, partners with companies, including Nestlé Waters, to develop bio-based bottles

Frutiger said Nestlé aims to provide a workplace that generates equal opportunities for everyone, and in which people are treated with dignity and respect.

“In line with our commitment to enhance gender balance at all levels in our workforce, we further pledge to work to achieve equal pay for our employees,” he said.

Since 2011, Nestlé has increased the number of women in leadership positions every year, by embedding gender balance principles in all human resources practices, including recruitment, succession planning and promotion.

All Nestlé markets have an action plan on diversity and inclusion, including mentoring programs, flexible working arrangements, gender balance and unconscious bias training, a maternity policy in place, as well as breastfeeding and nursing rooms.

Diversity and inclusion are an integral part of Nestlé’s culture, in line with its purpose – enhancing quality of life and contributing to a healthier future – and values, which are rooted in respect.

PepsiCO, partners with companies, including Nestlé Waters, to develop bio-based bottles

The NaturALL Bottle Alliance is a research consortium formed in 2017 by Danone, Nestlé Waters and bio-based materials development company Origin Materials to accelerate the development of innovative packaging solutions made with 100 per cent sustainable and renewable resources.

PepsiCo has joined the alliance to advance the shared goal of creating beverage containers with a significantly reduced carbon footprint.

The Alliance also provides a progress report in its goal of developing and launching a PET1 plastic bottle made from bio-based material.

Launched in March 2017, the alliance uses biomass feedstocks, such as previously used cardboard and sawdust, so it does not divert resources or land from food production for human or animal consumption.

READ: Danny Celoni appointed CEO of PepsiCo ANZ

The technology being explored by the alliance represents a scientific breakthrough for the sector, and the Alliance aims to make it available to the entire food and beverage industry.

PepsiCo vice chairman and chief scientific officer Mehmood Khan said creating more sustainable packaging requires innovation through the value chain.

“Producing PET from sustainable bio-based sources that do not diminish food resources and are fully recyclable is a great example of such innovation and an important contributor to PepsiCo’s sustainable packaging program,” said Khan.

“Through our Performance with Purpose agenda, PepsiCo is committed to reducing the carbon impact of packaging in line with our goal to reduce absolute emissions of greenhouse gases by 20 per cent by 2030.

“Bio-based PET has the potential to reduce significantly the carbon footprint of our PET bottles, a huge contribution to our efforts in this area,” said Khan.

Origin Materials CEO John Bissell said PepsiCo is a welcome addition to the alliance because the the companies all share the goal of making renewable plastic a reality.

“Through the combined efforts of its members, the NaturALL Bottle Alliance is setting the bar for sustainability for an entire industry,” said Bissell.

1PET – Polyethylene terephthalate is the most common plastic in polyester family and is used in fibers for clothing, containers for liquids and foods, thermoforming for manufacturing, and in combination with glass fiber for engineering resins.

PET is also known as having one the most developed collection and recycling systems in the world, making it a key asset for the circular economy of plastics.

Nestlé Waters’ head of research and development, Massimo Casella, said the alliance has taken an important step in working together to tackle the challenges around plastic packaging.

“Developing 100 per cent bio-based PET is one way Nestlé is working to use more materials from sustainably managed renewable resources,” said Casella.

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