17/06/2021 – Sustainability / Ella’s Kitchen / Baby Food / Report / UK
Ella’s Kitchen unveils impressive social and environmental progress in 2021 sustainability report
Ella’s Kitchen has published its latest ‘Good Stuff We Do’ sustainability report, unveiling key social and environmental progress made since July 2019. The UK’s leading baby food brand also pledged to tackle pandemic-related impacts on early-years nutrition.
The new report highlights Ella’s Kitchen’s commitment to the B Corp movement and reveals the tangible impact the company has had on its employees, consumers and wider community.
In particular, the report highlights significant action on environmental impact – with the company committing to reach net zero, doubling the volume of its pouch recycling, and lobbying the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) on extended kerbside recycling since the last report.
Key highlights from this year’s report
The significant action highlighted in the new ‘Good Stuff We Do’ report demonstrates an array of programmes and initiatives from the leading baby food producer in the areas of social, environmental and business responsibility.
Aimed at doing good for ‘little tummies’, Ella’s Kitchen donated over 900,000 pouches of food to little ones across the UK, from the start of the pandemic to April 2021. This builds on work with local schools and network of foodbanks across the country, with the firm having donated over 100,000 pouches in the first three weeks.
In terms of environmental commitments, Ella’s Kitchen pledged to take action on Climate Change and be Net Zero by 2030, along with more than 500 other B Corps at COP25 in 2019 – committing to setting externally approved science-based targets for direct and indirect emissions across Scopes 1, 2 and 3 as defined by the GHG Protocol.
Also on the subject of green gains, in the past two years Ella’s has also taken huge steps to address the recyclability of packaging, joining the Flexible Packaging Consortium to deliver a roadmap to DEFRA outlining how to ensure flexible packaging is phased into kerbside collections across the UK from 2023.
Furthermore, Ella’s has successfully doubled the volume of pouches recycled via Terracycle between FY2018 and FY2020 – from 337,986 to 1.19 million.
Within the realm of responsible business, Ella’s Kitchen has recertified as a B Corp – reaffirming its commitment to using business as a force for good and to protect the planet for future generations.
The leading babyfood manufacturer also joined the Better Business Act campaign, which lobbies to change UK law to make sure every company in the UK aligns the interests of their shareholders with those of wider society and the environment, calling for an amendment to Section 172 of the Companies Act in line with such principles.
Beyond that, Ella’s Kitchen has been proud to launch the Cath Empringham Working Mums programme, in memory of the company’s late Managing Director, who passed away during the reporting period. Through the programme, the firm offers mentorship to working mums who could use a helping help to progress their careers, to juggle home and work life, or to just decide what they want to do next in their careers.
Campaign to improve nutrition for early-years children
The past 18 months have been like no other for business and society, and this year’s report details how Ella’s Kitchen supported parents and employees alike facing increased uncertainty due to the pandemic – as well as continuing to protect the planet for future generations.
In recognition of the detrimental effect of the pandemic on early-years children – and the widened social inequalities that have directly impacted children’s nutrition as a result – Ella’s Kitchen has announced the launch of the first stage of an ambitious multi-year public advocacy campaign to improve nutritional standards for early years children in the UK.
The campaign will delve into key challenges that early-years parents now face as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and will explore issues such as food poverty, early-years obesity, and education around nutrition to improve the health and wellbeing of future generations. “With one-in-five children starting school obese – and rising to one-in-three by the age of 10 – there needs to be drastic change in the way we approach childhood eating habits,” the firm said in a statement.
“Ella’s Kitchen was founded with a mission to improve early years childhood nutrition, and the pandemic has reinforced the role early years nutrition can play in helping to lay the foundations for a life-long healthy relationship with food and all the associated long-term health benefits,” the company stated.
“A business can and should be a force for good”
Mark Cuddigan, CEO of Ella’s Kitchen, said he and his team were “incredibly proud” to launch the firm’s new Good Stuff We Do report. “Of course, it has been a challenging year, but those challenges have only reinforced our belief that a business can and should be a force for good,” he remarked. “Success should not solely be defined by profits and revenue but by the positive contributions made to the world. We aren’t perfect, and sometimes we do get it wrong, but we’re committed to continuous improvement,” he added.
Mr Cuddigan said the pandemic had given him and his team an opportunity to “step back, reflect and review” what they wanted to focus on for the future. “It has put some of the challenges the world faces into sharp focus,” he commented. “We know we must go further faster on climate change in order to protect the planet for future generations. And we have renewed energy behind our mission – to improve children’s lives through developing healthy relationships with food. We must work harder to address the inequalities in our food system and to focus on the causes of childhood obesity. We believe more focus needs to be given to the under-fives, so we’re delighted to launch the first phase of our new public advocacy campaign, which aims to get to the heart of the long-term challenges early years parents are facing.”
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