Kraft Heinz agrees to virgin plastic reduction goal
Under pressure from activist organization As You Sow, Kraft Heinz said it intends to set a substantial virgin plastic packaging reduction goal later this year.
The Kraft Heinz Co., the third-largest food and beverage company in North America, has agreed to set a goal to reduce total virgin plastic use following the filing of a shareholder proposal and engagement with the activist organization As You Sow.
The proposal asked Kraft Heinz to report on how the company would reduce plastic packaging, including planned reduction strategies or goals, materials redesign, substitution, or reductions in use of virgin plastic.
Kraft Heinz intends to set a substantial virgin plastic packaging reduction goal later this year or in the first quarter of 2023, the company informed As You Sow in a statement. In response, As You Sow agreed to withdraw its shareholder proposal. Kraft Heinz’s commitment continues a steady stream of major U.S. brands and retailers who have agreed to cut virgin plastic use after interaction with As You Sow.
Kraft Heinz said it would “continue to drive towards its packaging goals and support of a circular economy through a variety of initiatives and investments, including reduction of virgin plastic material, packaging redesign, increased use of recycled content, and continued exploration and scaling of reuse models.”
As You Sow said it has similar pending proposals at Amazon, McDonald’s, and Kroger. Forty-five per cent of Kroger shareholders and 35 per cent of Amazon shareholders reportedly supported proposals last year asking for reductions in plastic use.
Five other large companies — Keurig Dr Pepper, Mondelez International, PepsiCo, Target Corp., and Walmart — agreed to virgin plastic reductions in 2021 after the filing of shareholder proposals by As You Sow. Cumulatively, the reduction in use of virgin plastic announced by these five brands is expected to total more than 700,000 tons.
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