Now, it's more vital than ever that brands contribute to solutions to reduce plastic use and support climate action. And expectations are high - it's no longer about minimizing negative impacts, companies like ours aim to actively drive positive outcomes. At Nestlé, our intention is to advance regenerative food systems at scale. This means supporting the development of food systems that help protect, renew, and restore the environment, improve the livelihoods of farmers, and enhance the resilience and well-being of farming communities. With an effort this big, size matters: I feel a unique sense of opportunity to work at a company with major reach and scale: we can make a difference through impactful environmental initiatives that span countries and even continents.
At Nestlé, our intention is to advance regenerative food systems at scale. This means supporting the development of food systems that help protect, renew, and restore the environment, improve the livelihoods of farmers, and enhance the resilience and well-being of farming communities.Aude Gandon
Of course, true change doesn't happen overnight. When it comes to sustainability, we're in it for the long haul at Nestlé: investing in ambitious, innovative projects that can help benefit people and the planet for years to come. We're committed to sharing the results of our efforts, so I wanted to highlight three Nestlé brands doing particularly exciting work on sustainability around the world.
Nescafé: Decades of partnership
Last year, 87% of Nescafé coffee was sourced via the Nescafé Plan - our approach to help coffee farmers improve their environmental impact as well as their incomes. Regenerative agriculture is at the heart of this plan. I recently visited Vietnam, where coffee farmers who grow Nescafé beans are working hand-in-hand with local government and researchers to diversify crops, develop new irrigation methods, and better understand coffee plants. They're using a Nestlé-supported smartphone app to identify exactly how to solve problems with coffee plants, which helps them avoid overusing chemicals, preserve the quality of the soil, and lower their costs. It was incredible to see.
In Vietnam, I also met local agronomists who are constantly learning how to grow better by trialing new coffee plant varieties from around the world. The Nescafé Plan was launched over 10 years ago and is going strong. These investments really benefit from these types of deep relationships with farmers and partners - truly understanding their experience and customizing how we support them. It's a long-term, committed approach that involves meaningful investment over decades. Its impact (pdf, 9Mb) is already felt from farm to cup.
Gerber: Expanding on commitment to the next generation
In the US, our baby food brand, Gerber, is engaging in regenerative agriculture on a new level. Gerber is investing in research farms that explore how regenerative farming can benefit soil health, biodiversity, and nutrition. Meanwhile, their Clean Field FarmingTM approach is already supporting agriculture experts who work with growers on soil, seeds, and harvest to ensure fruit & veggie purees are not only nutritious, but also wholesome and safe for every tiny tummy.
Sustainability is part of Gerber's journey each step of the way, from production (100% of factory waste is diverted from landfill to more sustainable facilities) to packaging (working to make 100% of our packaging designed for recycling by 2025). I see Gerber as a fantastic example of how a brand can evolve on sustainability while staying true to itself, because healthy ingredients and a healthy planet are both important to parents of young children.
KitKat: Innovating to transform community impact
KitKat has long been sourcing cocoa through Nestlé's Cocoa Plan, which provides farmers with training on good farming practices supports access to education in cocoa communities and empowers women as agent of change. In January 2022, Nestlé leveled up our Nestlé Cocoa Plan by launching the Income Accelerator Program to help cocoa-farming families close the gap to a living income. Cocoa-farming families in Côte d'Ivoire are rewarded not just for the quantity and quality of their cocoa beans, but for practices that benefit the environment and local communities, like practices that help increase productivity. manage sustainable land use, and support to enroll their kids in school.
Crucially, the cash incentives in the Income Accelerator Program are split equally between the two heads of household, encouraging gender equality. Having begun as a pilot in 2020, the program has now expanded to 10,000 cocoa-farming families in Côte d'Ivoire, and we plan to extend it further in Ghana in 2024 based on our learnings. Our goal is to reach 160,000 cocoa-farming families in our global supply chain by 2030.
That deep engagement on social issues affecting cocoa communities, as well as environmental sustainability, is helping the program break new grounds. It reflects how we're approaching sustainability holistically at Nestlé: with ambition, long-term commitment, and transparency.
These three brands have inspired and motivated me, and helped raise the bar on the role they play for their communities and the planet. But they're not alone. I'm looking forward to sharing more updates from our brands, big and small, global and local, in their journeys. Stay tuned, and thanks to each of you for continuing to push brands and companies like ours to level-up our impact.