Two companies Mercy Investment Services engages recently released reports that highlight their progress in response to shareholder concerns.
Kroger recently released its 2019 Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) report
that highlights the company’s progress on a number of ESG issues, as well as its flagship Zero Hunger – Zero Waste program. In 2018, Kroger rescued 100 million pounds of food company-wide, a 10% increase from the previous year, and 83% of stores are consistently donating food every month. Kroger is working to expand the types of food that can be safely donated to include seafood, deli items, and milk. The company also reduced its retail food waste footprint by 9% and increased diversion from landfills by 13% compared to 2017. Today, 73% of Kroger-owned supermarkets are recycling food waste, diverting unsold organics to animal feed, composting and anaerobic digestion. In addition to its efforts to reduce food waste, Kroger is working to reduce plastic waste through recycling programs and to use reusable packaging with select Kroger products.
In 2019, Mercy Investment Services joined members of the Seventh Generation Interfaith Coalition for Responsible Investment and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility in filing a resolution on human rights risks in Kraft Heinz’s operations and supply chain. The company responded by issuing a Global Human Rights Policy
, which is guided by internationally recognized human rights standards and addresses issues including forced labor, freedom of association, fair and equitable wages, ethical recruitment, and land rights. The policy also establishes a Global Steering Group responsible for implementing and monitoring compliance of the policy and outlines a due diligence process to assess and mitigate potential and actual negative human rights impacts in the company’s operations and global supply chain. Investors commend Kraft Heinz for this significant commitment to address human rights risks and will continue to work closely with the company during the implementation phase.