Interview with account manager Liadhán Collins
|Advertising - the bellwether industry|
Pictured: Mars Chocolate HQ in New Jersey
Mars, which includes Pedigree, Wrigley, M&M’s and Uncle Ben’s among its brands, has this week launched an updated global corporate website, which includes both its marketing code and its sustainability goals, not least its target of achieving zero emissions by 2040.
On the new site is a summary of the company’s principles in action, which cover the areas of health and nutrition, supply chain, operations, products and working at Mars, and outline its targets, progress, and ongoing challenges.
“What most people know about Mars is that we have a portfolio of brands that are loved by billions of consumers around the globe,” said Paul S Michaels, president and chief executive officer, Mars, Incorporated. “What they might not know is that we are a diverse, privately-owned corporation with more than 65,000 associates, and that we have built our business on five principles – quality, responsibility, mutuality, efficiency and freedom.
“While we have always engaged with our communities and our partners, we recognize that we have an opportunity to expand our communication to a broader audience. Very reasonably, people want to know that they are choosing to support brands and companies that live up to their responsibilities to their associates, consumers, customers, suppliers, communities and the environment.”
One of the key targets outlined by Mars in these new communications is the company’s ambition to cut greenhouse gas emissions from factories and offices to zero by 2040. The company said it plans to achieve this through absolute emission reductions, without the use of carbon offsets and regardless of business growth.
Other elements include details of sustainable sourcing policies across a range of essential raw materials – ranging from coffee and tea to rice, fish, cocoa and palm oil.
In the area of health and nutrition, Mars outlines its global commitment, made in 2007, to not advertise food, snack and confectionery products to children under 12. The new site includes full details the company’s marketing code, as well as its commitment to implement guideline daily Amount (GDA) nutrition labelling on the majority of its chocolate and confection products by the end of 2011.
“As a company, our objective is to create lasting, mutual benefits for all those involved in our business success by creating positive social impacts, minimising our environmental impacts and creating economic value,” said Michaels.
“In some arenas, we are making good progress, in others - like cocoa sustainability - we have more work to do. But, through collaboration with stakeholders including our customers, suppliers, governments, NGOs, academics and business peers, we’re committed to addressing these challenges and opportunities.”
Earlier this week, Mars revealed that Maltesers will become its first brand to carry the Fairtrade mark. Fairtrade certified Maltesers will appear in shops in Ireland and the UK in 2012, in a mobve the company said will contribute more than US$1m annually in Fairtrade Premium funds for cocoa farmers.