Sustainable Agriculture Initiatives
Sustainably Sourced Cocoa - UTZ Certified
Our De Ruijter brand in The Netherlands is the first major chocolate sprinkles manufacturer to announce the switch to UTZ CERTIFIED cocoa that adheres to sustainable agriculture practices for the cocoa supply.
The move to UTZ CERTIFIED cocoa is an important step that will help to provide a sustainable future for Ivory Coast cocoa growers. By teaching growers safe and more efficient farming practices, the quality and yield of cocoa beans will increase, resulting in a better income for farmers and knowledge to the supply chain. UTZ CERTIFIED works together with major stakeholders from industry, government and civil society to help achieve a more sustainable cocoa sector. The Code is internationally recognized, and the goal is to reach many small farmers and involve them in the global supply for responsible cocoa.
De Ruijter is the first chocolate sprinkles producer in The Netherlands to feature the UTZ CERTIFIED logo on its packages.
Certified Sustainable Palm Oil
Heinz is on track to convert to 100% certified sustainable palm oil by 2013.
In 2010, Heinz converted our largest global palm oil usage to segregated certified palm oil sources from a new plant in The Netherlands. As a result, Heinz began using segregated certified sustainable palm oil in manufacturing frozen potato products at our Westwick factory. Heinz also reduced our palm oil usage in North America through product reformulation to enhance product health and wellness.
In addition, Heinz is in the process of reducing our global demand for palm oil by 25% in Fiscal Year 2012 (versus the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2011). Our goal is to use palm oil in new products only when there is no technical or commercial alternative. We are also reformulating existing recipes to incorporate alternative environmentally responsible sources.
Heinz will also promote the use of palm oil from sustainable sources through our membership in the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil. This not-for-profit association brings together stakeholders — including palm oil producers, palm oil processors or traders, consumer goods manufacturers, retailers, banks and investors, environmental or nature conservation non-government organizations (NGOs), and social or developmental NGOs — to develop and implement global standards for sustainable palm oil.
Statement on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO):
As a global leader in food safety, Heinz and our affiliates globally strive to use ingredients that are not from GMO sources whenever possible. In the case of tomatoes and potatoes, we do not allow the use of GM-bred seeds for Heinz raw materials. Our tomatoes, for example, are grown from natural hybrid HeinzSeed, which is not genetically modified.
Heinz has implemented a policy that prohibits the use of ingredients from GMO sources in regions where such use is not approved by regulatory authority. Heinz also refrains from using GMO ingredients in markets where consumers have expressed low acceptance of foods with GMO ingredients.
Overall, our food safety systems are designed to ensure quality and consumer protection. The ingredients we source meet strict criteria for food safety and comply with local and regional regulatory requirements.
Heinz recognizes worldwide customers’ differing views, concerns and perceptions about GMOs, and we will continue to be responsive to changes in consumer expectations and comply with regulatory and labeling requirements.