(photo: Artem Beliaikin)
24.07.2020, 12:44

Championing Sustainable Food Supply

Sodexo and WWF have extended a decade-long partnership focused on reducing the French multinational foodservice and facility services provider's carbon footprint.


Under the partnership which is a commitment made by Sodexo in support of its corporate responsibility roadmap, "Better Tomorrow 2025", WWF has helped the group improving its sustainable food offerings and purchasing practices by combining its technical expertise and thought leadership on sustainability with Sodexo's global market reach to protect and conserve natural resources.


Sodexo also believes the collaboration represents best practice by meeting multiple objectives simultaneously; and, particularly, achieving positive impacs o nthe health of the planet as well as Sodexo consumers, and driving larger changes in the food system.


Maria Outters, Group SVP for Corporate Responsibility, explains: "After 10 years of successful collaboration, we are thrilled to renew our global partnership with WWF. Working with WWF has enabled us to set credible, science-based and ambitious targets to align and drive our environmental efforts all across Sodexo. As we start this next chapter of our journey together, we will continue to aim to reduce our environmental impact and provide more sustainable options for our consumers, while striving to move the needle and bring about much needed change throughout the industry. The complex challenges we face today require us to collaborate to find solutions, and to work with the full range of stakeholders, whether NGOs like WWF, our suppliers, our clients and other partners."


Last year, Sodexo announced an ambitious Science-Based Target (SBT) to reduce group carbon emissions by 34 per cent before the end of 2025. In doing so, it became the first company in the the global food services sector to align its carbon target with the aim of the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Centigrade.


Workstreams already introduced to reduce the impact of company operations on natural ecosystems, include:

Increasing the share of low-carbon menus: the Group seeks to rebalance its food offer and increase the share of sustainable proteins and plant-rich foods in its menus (target of over 30 per cent of plant-based meals in menus globally) as well as acting on different strategies to encourage guests to choose more sustainable plant rich options.


Sourcing responsibly: Sodexo and WWF pursue their work on the responsible sourcing of land commodities and seafood. Sodexo was the first catering company to develop its Sustainable Seafood Sourcing strategy and it has been implemented in all countries it operates in. Looking forward, the group is working with WWF to implement a company-wide policy to fight the deforestation and conversion of natural ecosystems for critical raw materials including soy, palm oil, beef and paper.


Reducing food waste: as part of its corporate responsibility roadmap Better Tomorrow 2025, Sodexo has been working for several years to reduce food waste, notably through the deployment of WasteWatch. This program has already saved the equivalent of 4.8 million meals. With the renewed partnership, WWF will continue to provide Sodexo with its expertise in food waste management to support the Group’s goal: reduce global food waste by 50 per cent by 2025.


Raising awareness and mobilising all employees, including managers, sales teams and operational teams to enable Sodexo to achieve its sustainability objectives, the partnership will also include a program to improve awareness, progress reporting and action plan definition at operational levels, for example, leveraging a new Site Engagement Assessment tool at the site level named SEA.


Marie-Christine Korniloff, Deputy Director for Corporate Engagement with WWF France, comments: "We are delighted to renew this partnership with Sodexo, a long-standing partner of WWF, and a leader in Quality of Life services. With more than 100 million consumers served every day throughout the world, Sodexo’s scale can help it drastically reduce its environmental impact and we are heavily invested in supporting its transformation. In working on the evolution of Sodexo's offer, we also aim to achieve greater sustainability in the food services sector."


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