Our business principles
In line with Nestlé's purpose and values, our Corporate Business Principles guide the actions and behaviors of everyone in our company. They reflect our culture, which has evolved over the last 150 years.
Our Corporate Business Principles provide a strong ethical framework. They ensure we act with integrity while complying with laws, regulations and our own commitments.
The Corporate Business Principles contain six chapters. Click on the colored triangles to discover more information about each one.
Wherever we are in the world, the Nestlé company stands for tasty, safe and high-quality products. Products made with care and without compromise.
Alongside our commitment to quality, is our dedication to clear communication. We provide reliable, scientifically supported information that helps make a positive impact on people's lives.
Our objective is to offer the tastiest and healthiest product ranges, while increasing nutritional value and affordability.
As our scientific knowledge is evolving, we continually develop our products. Innovating with speed and agility.
Across the globe, the Nestlé company stands for quality and safety. Our Quality Policy (pdf, 2 Mb) summarizes our commitment, including:
- Developing and delivering trusted products that support a healthier future
- Maintaining high food safety standards
- Challenging ourselves to improve our management systems to guarantee quality
- Ensuring all people in our value chain take ownership of product quality and safety
We deliver reliable, transparent communication that empowers our consumers. Our communications to children promote healthy lifestyles and physical activity. They do not mislead, undermine parental authority or create unrealistic ideas of success.
When providing products for infants, we apply the following principles:
- We are committed to supporting breastfeeding as the ideal nutrition for babies
- We recommend breastfeeding over all other feeding alternatives
- Every child has the right to the best possible first 1000 days of life
- Caregivers should have access to the highest quality solutions for the choices they may make
- All solutions must be rooted in current, high quality nutritional and behavioral science
- All caregivers should feel respected and at peace with their decision about how to feed their baby
- Achieving the best possible nutritional outcomes requires responsible engagement and advocacy with all stakeholders
As the world's largest food and beverage company, we're committed to providing a good working environment and opportunities for everyone. We respect human rights and promote the inclusion of all communities, cultures, genders and ages.
Together, it's our mission to maintain a safe and healthy environment for employees, contractors and all those who work with us.
We respect and promote human rights across our organization, in line with the United Nations Guiding Principles and the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact. We've created policies and solid internal systems that enable us to identify and resolve issues quickly. In particular, we stand against any violation of human rights, with zero tolerance to child labor, forced labor and modern slavery.
Diversity and inclusion is a big part of our culture. We treat each other with respect and promote the inclusion of all communities, cultures and ages. At the same time, we're working to enhance gender balance.
We believe a diverse culture is vital to our future and we leverage diversity of thinking to drive creativity and innovation.
The safety and health of our teams is a key part of our values. We're committed to preventing any accidents, injuries and work-related illness across the business.
At Nestlé, we understand that everyone plays a role in creating a safe and healthy work environment. Our managers promote awareness and knowledge of health and safety to employees, contractors and anyone else who works with us.
We're committed to building a positive future for people and the planet. This means treating our customers fairly and choosing our suppliers with care.
We support environmentally sustainable practices across our business. Working together to reduce food waste, lower greenhouse gas emissions, cut down on plastic - and manage water resources.
The Nestlé Responsible Sourcing Standard (pdf, 2 Mb) means we choose our suppliers wisely. We work with those who use sustainable agricultural practices, protect biodiversity and replenish natural resources. In doing so, we ensure our farmers receive an income that provides a decent standard of living.
We're continually reviewing our sourcing choices. This means we can continue improving labor standards, safety, health and environmental leadership across our business.
We demonstrate honesty, integrity and fairness to our customers. So, when it comes to business activities, we expect the same from our trading partners.
If our partners break our Business Principles, we request an open and transparent discussion. This enables us to work together to correct mistakes and move forward in a positive way.
We believe in preserving the planet for future generations. That's why we're committed to developing recyclable or reusable packaging materials, reducing food waste and exploring circular business models.
At all stages of the product life cycle, we strive to use resources efficiently. We favor sustainably managed renewable resources and we're working to manage water, reduce plastic and cut our emissions. We've also committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2050.
Our mission to improve quality of life means that ethics and integrity are a vital part of our business. We have non-negotiable standards when it comes to key areas of behavior including integrity, compliance with laws, conflicts of interests, antitrust and fair dealing, bribery, corruption (UNGC Principle 10), discrimination and harassment, plus accurate reporting and accounting.
We take the same approach to data and privacy. We respect the rights of individuals in relation to their personal data and recognize that privacy is a fundamental human right.
The Nestlé Code of Business Conduct (pdf, 1 Mb) outlines minimum standards in key areas of employee behavior. We expect our employees and third parties to embrace these principles:
- Act legally and honestly, disclosing and resolving conflicts of interest
- Compete in full compliance with antitrust, competition and fair dealing laws
- Employees are prohibited from engaging in bribery, corruption or any illicit activities
- All financial records must be in alignment with our accounting standards
Our Global Privacy Program ensures that privacy is built into our business operations and that data is handled lawfully. As such, all data is kept secure and protected against unauthorized processing, unlawful destruction, loss or misuse.
In addition, we avoid using technology and data in ways that could lead to discrimination, exploitation or harm. This includes a commitment to the ethical use of Artificial Intelligence.
We believe in communicating openly and transparently with our own teams and external stakeholders. We welcome free discussion and different viewpoints. While also fostering collaboration and knowledge sharing, both in and outside our business.
Creating an inspiring and innovative workplace is important to us. We have a culture where every employee has the chance to engage, create and contribute.
Everyone in our organization is encouraged to speak openly on any matter. This could be with a line manager, our Human Resources teams, or through our Integrity hotline with full confidentiality.
We believe it's essential to engage with stakeholders and bring in relevant external views on important issues. This approach enables us to create opportunities for knowledge sharing, open discussion and deep dialogue. After all, we see ourselves as part of Society.
When we engage with public authorities on public policy development, we're committed to transparent, responsible interactions.
Our Compliance Program supports the Nestlé Corporate Business Principles, based on ethics, integrity and a 'doing the right thing for the right reason' mindset. Our compliance is assessed through our CARE Program, which relies on an independent external audit network in addition to other independent external audits and certifications.
We continuously improve communications, processes and training to ensure adherence to the Nestlé Corporate Business Principles and bridge gaps whenever necessary with zero tolerance for instances of non-compliance.
Speak Up is widely accessible, to enable our employees and external stakeholders to raise concerns about potential instances of noncompliance. We investigate all concerns raised and prohibit retaliation against any employee for such reports made in good faith.
Implementing our Corporate Business Principles
Every employee has committed to adhering to the Nestlé Corporate Business Principles, regardless of location. Our Code of Business Conduct helps us implement these principles. The code establishes non-negotiable standards of behavior in key areas. It isn't meant to cover all possible issues, instead, it's designed to offer a framework of reference. This allows us to measure any activities and ensure we keep ourselves accountable.
Our Code of Business Conduct
This Code of Business Conduct specifies and helps the continued implementation of the Corporate Business Principles by establishing certain non-negotiable minimum standards of behavior in key areas.
Employees should always be guided by the following basic principles:
- avoid any conduct that could damage or risk Nestlé or its reputation;
- act in good faith, legally and honestly;
- put the Company's interests ahead of personal or other interests.
Download the Corporate Business Principles and Code of Business Conduct in English. Other language versions are available in our Documents and reports section.