Kellogg said Wednesday it will step up efforts to reduce planet-warming emissions in its supply chain as part of a broader initiative designed to be more environmentally friendly.
Under the plan, the Battle Creek-based food products manufacturer will require key suppliers such as farms and mills to measure and publicly disclose their greenhouse gas outputs and targets for reducing them. The company said it will report annually on those emissions and include climate and deforestation policies in the company's code of conduct for suppliers.
Kellogg Co. will strengthen cutback requirements for its own plants, building on a 2008 pledge to reduce emissions 15 percent to 20 percent, said Diane Holdorf, chief sustainability officer. It also pledged to join Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy, a coalition that supports legislation that favors cleaner energy and a low-carbon economy.
"Not only is it what our customers and stakeholders expect of us ... but we want to hold ourselves accountable," Holdorf said.
The announcement drew praise from Oxfam International, a group pushing the food and beverage industry to reduce carbon emissions.
"Climate change is putting hundreds of millions of people at risk of hunger and threatening everything from coffee and cereal to wine and chocolate," spokeswoman Monique van Zijl said. "Kellogg is joining a growing list of companies that are putting the weight of their brands behind climate action."
In addition to the measures on climate, the cereal maker also known for products such as Pringles potato chips and Keebler cookies announced a series of green performance goals to reach by 2020 that include a 50 percent increase in use of low-carbon energy and establishing water-reuse projects in 25 percent of its plants.
Kellogg will boost to 30 percent the number of plants sending no waste to landfills and use more efficient packaging, with all timber-based packaging materials being recycled or coming from sources certified as sustainable, Holdorf said.