HERSHEY, Pa., U.S. — The Hershey Company today released its latest Shared Goodness Report, highlighting progress made on sustainability issues where Hershey can have an impact. Since announcing its Shared Goodness Promise sustainability strategy last year, the company has made significant strides in areas such as deforestation, sustainable cocoa sourcing and human rights.
In 2018, Hershey announced a number of new initiatives that align with the company’s four key sustainability focus areas: Shared Futures, Shared Communities, Shared Business and Shared Planet. These initiatives include new Human Rights and Environmental policies and The Heartwarming Project, a program to help youth connect with one another and their communities. Progress also includes Hershey’s commitment to zero deforestation in cocoa-growing regions and the expansion of its ViVi nutritional supplement for children into Côte d’Ivoire.
“Hershey has always been a company driven by purpose, and I am excited by the strong start we’ve made on our Shared Goodness Promise, especially in the areas of environmental stewardship and human rights,” said Michele Buck, Hershey’s CEO. “I am honored to lead a company with people who care about one another and their communities, have deep pride in our incredible brands and are committed to helping build a brighter future.”
Notable milestones highlighted in the report include:
- Connecting Kids to a Brighter Future – The Hershey Company has continued Milton Hershey’s legacy of helping children succeed and reach their full potential. In 2018, the company nourished 316,837 children, which included producing and providing the vitamin-fortified snack ViVi to 57,700 schoolchildren in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. The company also launched The Heartwarming Project to help children create more meaningful connections with each other, reaching more than 6 million children through established partnerships.
- Using Scale to Drive Positive Change in Cocoa Growing Communities – The Hershey Company launched its Cocoa For Good strategy last year, a key component of the company’s Shared Business focus area. Hershey is set to meet its goal of 100 percent sustainable cocoa sourcing practices by the end of 2020, with 80 percent of Hershey cocoa certified and sustainably sourced. The company also published a new Human Rights Policy in the first quarter of 2019 outlining its commitment to respect human rights throughout its value chain.
- Combating Climate Change – The Hershey Company is working to end deforestation, reduce its carbon footprint and water usage, eliminate waste and address challenges and risks resulting from climate change. Since 2017, the company has added two more zero waste to landfill sites. The Hershey Company announced a new enterprise wide Environmental Policy and committed to setting meaningful and ambitious greenhouse gas emission reduction goals as part of the Science Based Targets initiative.
- Helping People and Communities Thrive – Through Shared Communities, The Hershey Company focuses on helping communities where employees live and work. In 2018, Hershey pledged $1 million to construct an updated Hershey Community Center that will host youth afterschool programs, activities for seniors and civic programs. Over the last year, Hershey employees volunteered 133,600 hours and donated $10.9 million in cash and $9.7 million in products.
- Celebrating our Team of Remarkable People – For 125 years, Hershey employees have been a critical part of the company’s success. The company has peer-leading gender representation and has had a 46 percent increase in the number of diverse professionals in the U.S. since 2012. Across Hershey’s U.S. salaried workforce, women earn $0.99 for every $1.00 men earn, compared to a national average of $0.85. In 2018, Hershey was recognized for its progress, receiving its first ever ranking on DiversityInc’s 2018 Top 50 Companies.
“We are dedicated to doing well by doing good, and through our Shared Goodness Promise we are able to place a stronger focus on areas where we can have the biggest positive impact on consumers, communities and the planet,” said Jeff King, Senior Director of Global Sustainability and Social Impact at Hershey. “Our progress in areas such as responsible cocoa sourcing and human rights shows the power of partnerships with experts and organizations for supporting sustainable change.”
For more information on Hershey’s Shared Goodness Promise, you can read the 2018 Sustainability Report here.