Maple Leaf Foods, Canada, released its 2018 sustainability report, which emphasizes its guiding pillars of better food, better care, better communities and better planet.

Better food

In 2018, Maple Leaf Foods made major changes to its branded product line to remove any artificial ingredients, colors and flavors, and in 2019, will continue to execute on the Maple Leaf brand’s Food Manifesto.

The company also continues to broaden its reach into alternative proteins, with the acquisition of Field Roast Grain Meat Co., Seattle, Wash., and Lightlife Foods Inc., which later introduced a plant-based burger line. Maple Leaf Foods also introduced a new plant-based food manufacturer called Greenleaf Foods.

Better care

Maple Leaf Foods maintains strong values in how it treats the raising and sourcing of animals.

As a result, it converted approximately 44,000 sows (67%) to its advanced open sow housing system, which involved reconstructing over 30 barns.

Better communities

Through the Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security, Maple Leaf Foods is in position to be the lead advocate for change, making investments with innovative partners to advance food security in Canada and tackle hunger nationwide.

It’s also dedicated to being a leader in workplace safety practices, striving for zero occupational injuries in the workplace. For example, in 2018, Maple Leaf Foods achieved a Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) of 0.66.

It also partnered with the Richard Ivey School of Business, London, to create a “Women in Leadership” course to provide executive development and coaching opportunities to 48 senior and high-performing women in the organization.

Better planet

Maple Leaf Foods is making progress toward its goal of 50% environmental footprint reduction by 2025. By the end of last year, the company was ahead of target in both electricity usage and solid waste.

In 2019, it will commence re-auditing of key facilities to update environmental sustainability action plans, and work with utility and other partners to identify new and more aggressive reduction and efficiency opportunities. The company is also developing a comprehensive carbon management strategy to bridge the gap where more dramatic reductions are required, but have not yet been achieved.

“It is both possible and responsible to achieve social good and business success simultaneously, and we are committed to identifying strategies to deliver on both,” says Michael McCain, president and CEO.