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The State of Sustainability at Food and Beverage Companies

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Sustainability has evolved over the past decade from being simply the right thing to do to a strategic must-have for most businesses. Sustainability is now viewed as a competitive advantage, especially for food and beverage companies. This is one of the many intriguing findings of Grant Thornton’s 2014 survey, The State of Sustainability at Food and Beverage Companies. The study gauged attitudes toward sustainability from 189 respondents at U.S. food retail, food and beverage distribution, and consumer product goods companies.

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The State of Sustainability at Food and Beverage Companies

  1. 1. The State of Sustainability at Food and Beveragefiompanies Benefits of a Being a sustainable business is about more than just reducing waste. especially for food and beverage companies. it is about attracting and keeping customers by conscious bu siness protecting the emironmerit, innroving lives through social programs and maintaining approa ch a re ripe oorporate accountability. We surveyed the industry to uncover the state of sustainablity _ along the food and beverage supply chain. Our results show that many companies have for me takl "8 built tremendous momentum; yet maiy are stil on the sidelines. THE STATE OF SUSTAINABILITY IN 4 QUESTIONS HOW IMPORTANT IS SUSTAINABILITY TO YOUR F| RM’S BUSINESS STRATEGY? Sustainability is: Critical to growth 68% Profit-generating in the long—term 68% Demanded by consumers 67% A competitive diiferentiator 64% Difficult to implement 52% Profit-generating in the short-term 25% A fad that will disappear in a few years 10% WHAT FACTORS ARE IMPORTANT WHEN CONSIDERING SUSTAINABILITY? -Ln‘ 27 21% 21%. 2o= >-; . 19% Long-tenn Leadership buyin Budget Public perception Proven ROI Staff profitability 10% 8% 5% 5% 4% Chief operating Dedicated Committee CFO Corporate Chief Boardof Other officer sustainability responsibility marketing directors function officer officer 1 HOW IS IT MEASURED? T 3 in 4 companies measixe their sustairability efforts. CHAMPIONS AND LAGGARDS IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN Suppliers and manufacturers are the furthest Top sustainable activities show different priorities along the adoption curve along the supply chain Supplier Retailer Wholesaler Supplier Retailer Wholesaler Followers (compliance) 22% 27% T 41%‘ Reducing produ_ction_wasteT__ 78% T T _ T38T%T Mature (risk and Paper and _ . , 5 , _ . , cost management) 27% 31°/ ° 13% _D§'t¢TI(ETi8|_ft8_T| '9_TCY_CIll1E i T 69 f’T T T T 9° T T T TT 53 f’T Leaders (sustainable Reducing energy . . . busine SS mode” 24% 18% 19% consumption 62% 78% 47% Champions llargescal e, ~ 0 o e Sophisticated sustainable Strategy) 1 3% 9% 3% Reducing consumer waste 53 / o 45 A 38 /0 Not sure T T T T T 13% 16% T 25% Funding social programs 40% 32% 16%‘ 'Significant at the 90% level of confidence 'S’gnificant at the 95% level of confidence Responses do not total 100% due to rounding. " Significant at the 99% level of confidence Suppliers are more likely to: Retailers are more likely to: ~ Wholesalers are more likely to: 0 Say that sustainabiity is critics to growth 0 Reduce their energy consumption‘ 0 Dismiss sustainwility as a fad and that their customers expect it 0 Report saviigs through energy- 0 Implement a sustainable busiiess model reduction aid federal programs 0 Measure their sustainability efforts « zttii About The State of Sustainability at Food and Beverage Companies Survey The survey is based on answers from 189 respondents collected in April and May 2014 from C-suite and senior leaders in food and beverage retail, manufacturing/ suppiy, and wholesaler/ distribution/ brokerag sectors. Participant titles included: CEO, C00, CFO, CIO, owner, partner, chairman, vice president, sen iorvice president, enecutwe vice president, caegory manager, merchandising managr, marleting manager, buyer. and director/ gneral manager. a G Content in this piblication is not irtenchd to answer specific aiiestions or suggest sutabiity of actbn in a particular case. For _ additional irbmiation on the issues discussed, consult a Grant Thzirntnn U. P clent service partner or another qualified protssiond. An instinct for growth e 2014 Cnnt Thomtion up | Al rgms reserved I us. member firm of Grant Tliorrbon irierrmsorui Ltid