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Delhaize Group yesterday published its third corporate responsibility report, which gauges the Brussels-based international food retailer’s performance against its strategy and goals in the area, and summarizes the 2009 achievements of the group’s operating companies. Among the past year’s highlights were the reformulation of many private brand products to lower salt, fat and sugar content; the bolstering of food safety programs in the wake of an external benchmarking exercise; and the reduction of store energy consumption by 2.9 percent from 2008 to 2009.
In line with its commitment to corporate responsibility, Delhaize also revealed its membership in the BSCI (Business Social Compliance Initiative), which became official in January.
“We take corporate responsibility seriously at Delhaize Group. Not just in the good times, but all the time,” said president and CEO Pierre-Olivier Beckers. “Corporate responsibility is central to our operations, and is one of the three key pillars of the new strategic plan for the group — the ‘New Game Plan’ — that we launched in December 2009. We are proud that, even in a tough economic year, we were able to continue to deliver concrete actions. We are determined to pursue our efforts. We know that is the way to deliver the best of Delhaize, for our customers, our associates and our communities.”
The report lays out the Delhaize’s performance in the three key areas of products, people and planet. Particularly the group’s focus areas of promoting healthy eating, ensuring rigorous food safety, sourcing responsibly, ensuring the health and wellness of associates, developing employee talent, and reducing its impact on climate change.
Additional 2009 highlights include the development of sustainable seafood sourcing strategies for both the United States and Belgium; the launch of programs encouraging associates to adopt a healthier lifestyle; the reduction of total company greenhouse gas emissions of 0.2 percent from 2008 to 2009; and the adoption of a supplier code of conduct, which defines labor standards in accordance with International Labor Organization (ILO) conventions and is aligned with the BSCI.
The full report can be downloaded from the company’s corporate Web site, www.delhaizegroup.com.