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Our approach

Our Sustainability strategy

We launched our sustainability strategy: Pioneering a Sustainable Future in 2019, as part of our Annual Report and through our first stand-alone Sustainability Report.

One year on, in this document and through our second Sustainability Report, we are giving an update on progress towards our strategy targets while also reviewing our strategy itself to ensure that it is still appropriate to the needs of our business and our stakeholders.

The development of our current strategy was done during 2018 based on our 2017 materiality assessment. We run a materiality assessment process every two years and have completed a new one in 2019. We reviewed 69 issues in our latest iteration (up from 66 in 2017), evaluating them for relevance to each of our commercial goals (Profitable Sales Growth, Increased Productivity and Value Delivery) and for importance to each of our key Stakeholder groups (Shareholders, Customers, Employees, Suppliers, Communities and the Environment). Our top ten issues for each of the 2017 and 2019 assessments are shown in the table (sidebar). While there is quite a lot of movement in the assessment, we have reviewed this in detail and it accurately reflects changes in our business and in the external environment that have prioritised some issues at the expense of others. A clearer definition of our stakeholders has impacted on the results as has the clarity provided by our strategy. The relative movements of key issues such as Water, Energy and Environmental issues reflect these changes, but are not significant. More analysis of the changes can be found in our Sustainability Report.

We have reviewed our existing strategy based on the new materiality assessment and concluded that the strategy remains appropriate and still relates to the key issues facing our business and our key stakeholders. The mapping of our material issues to our strategic pillars is shown below:

Pillar Why is this a priority?
Sustainability Water

Water: This is a precious resource. In some parts of the world as water scarcity becomes more apparent, then so do the risks we potentially face – not least competition for resources, higher costs, the effect on water quality, and the possibility that water shortages will limit production. These risks are often shared with the community around us.
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Sustainability Energy

Energy: The effects of climate change could have far reaching consequences and risks for our business, whether this relates to disruption to our supply chain, availability of raw materials or increased costs of energy. It is in our interests to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and to play a part in combating climate change.
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Sustainability Effluent and Emissions

Effluent and emissions: While we seek to optimise our processes, we will always generate some wastewater and some of this will be discharged to the environment. We have strict internal and external standards to which we adhere to protect our local environment and avoid damage to the watersheds on which ultimately both our business and the neighbouring communities depend.
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Sustainability Social

Social: We are a global business that operates in over 50 countries on six continents, with a wide and diverse range of cultures. We seek to create a culture of inclusiveness, honesty, and positive teamwork where each employee can reach their potential in a safe working environment.

High ethical standards underpin the way we do business, as we build trust and ensure fair practices with our suppliers and customers.
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Sustainability Living

Living sustainably: Natural resources are becoming increasingly scarce. Environmental factors and population growth are increasing demand and putting pressure on the ecosystems of which we are a part.

We follow the principles of the waste hierarchy to reduce, reuse and recycle our waste in an efficient and, ultimately, value creating way. This requires us to use resources, efficiently and limit the disposal of waste to landfill.
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