A message from our Chairman and our CEO

   
Leadership in focus
Leadership in focus: Nestlé Chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, with Tshebedisano Primary School pupils in Soweto. In 2013, the school launched the Nestlé Healthy Kids Programme in South Africa, after winning a Nestlé Community Nutrition Award for their vegetable garden.

We believe that this 2013 report on Creating Shared Value at Nestlé represents a significant step forward in our drive to communicate transparently with our shareholders and stakeholders about our commitments and progress in all the areas where we engage with society. This report underlines our fundamental belief that for a company to be successful over the long term and create value for shareholders, it must also create value for society. At Nestlé, this begins with the creation of superior long-term value for shareholders by offering products and services that help people improve their nutrition, health and wellness.

Henri Nestlé founded the Company in 1866 on the success of a life-saving infant cereal. Today, we aim to enhance the quality of life of all our consumers by offering tastier and healthier food and beverages, as well as information and services to enable them to make the right choices at all stages of life. And we are investing for the future health and wellness of our consumers through our network of research centres, the Nestlé Institute of Health Sciences and the Nestlé Health Science business. We believe that good nutrition will play an ever more important role in the health and wellness of individuals and society.

Nestlé is all about quality of life and nutrition – that is what we live for as a company. But the relevance of that is the value that it creates: for consumers, for society and for our business – driving competitive advantage and R&D, being ahead of the curve, and building our brand value.” Paul Bulcke
Chief Executive Officer

To build a business capable of both delivering superior shareholder value and helping people improve their nutrition, health and wellness, Creating Shared Value is the approach we take to the business as a whole. In addition to nutrition, we focus on water, because water scarcity is a very serious issue in many parts of the world and water is quite simply the linchpin of food security. And we focus on rural development, because the overall well-being of farmers, rural communities, small entrepreneurs and suppliers is intrinsic to the long-term success of our business.

We continue to actively manage our commitments to environmental and social sustainability, necessary for operating our factories and for the sustainable growth and development of the communities and countries where we operate. With this report, we also restate our support for the UN Global Compact, as a founding member of UN Global Compact LEAD – an important platform for corporate sustainability leadership. We have always believed that in order to prosper we need the communities we serve and in which we operate to prosper as well; and that over the long term, healthy populations, healthy economies and healthy business performance are mutually reinforcing. This involves substantial training and education of people inside and outside Nestlé, as well as large investments in technology with lower environmental impact.

Partnerships in focus
Partnerships in focus: Paul Bulcke visiting a Chilean peach farm, located in the Region of Libertador General Bernardo O’Higgins, near Nestlé’s San Fernando factory, where infant food is manufactured.

We recognise that our position in society brings both opportunities and responsibilities: to do business in compliance with national laws, international standards and our own values and principles, as expressed in our Code of Business Conduct, Corporate Business Principles and Management and Leadership Principles. For a company like ours to prosper, we must take a long-term view, framed in a robust set of principles and values which have been developed over nearly 150 years. They are based on respect: respect for people, respect for cultures, respect for the environment and respect for the future of the world we live in. Thus, our commitments go beyond simple compliance and are based on common sense values that form the foundation upon which we build our actions in Creating Shared Value.

Last year, we decided to publish a set of forward-looking commitments, covering every part of our business, in order to provide a clear sense of the strategic direction we are heading in and the standards to which we hold ourselves accountable. They are real, they are credible, and we will do everything in our power to make sure they are deliverable. But we know that there will be challenges along the way, and these too we will share with you. In this report, we hope to demonstrate where we are making progress, and where there is more work to be done. We hope this report enables you – our shareholders and stakeholders – to hold us accountable and offer guidance. We have also introduced a number of new commitments and will report on them in future years. We welcome your feedback on this report, on our commitments and our performance.

Peter Brabeck-Letmathe and Paul Bulcke