Minimising our impact on the enviroment
- Carbon Emissions
- Looking After The Enviroment
- Sustainable Logistics
We also face a climate crisis, and we recognise that our business needs to play its role. Agriculture and manufacturing contribute to climate change, and in turn, are subject to a changing climate. We have a responsibility to our consumers and society to always do the right thing – to run our business as efficiently as possible, reducing the amount of energy and raw materials we use, and help our suppliers to do the same.
We must also help our consumers make better choices too, by delivering healthy and nutritious food, produced in ways that minimise damage to the environment.
We’re committed to understanding and responding to the changes in our environment to make sure we are equipped to build a sustainable business that looks after people and the planet, with high standards of animal welfare.
OUR SUSTAINABILITY JOURNEY
Our approach to sustainability for both Lactalis UK & Ireland and Lactalis Nestlé Chilled Dairy (LNCD) is focused on what’s important to our businesses, but also crucially what is important to our stakeholders, including our employees and suppliers, our farmers and our customers. The wider needs of society and the environment are also critical.
Minimising our impact on the enviroment
Supporting our partnering farms in promoting high standards of animal walfare and sustainability
Producing the best dairy products for quality and sustainability
We are committed to addressing the climate crisis and our priority is to take a rigorous approach and to avail ourselves of the best possible, third party expertise.
We have drawn upon external expertise for robust methodologies to assess our emissions.
Our CSR working group on carbon reduction has also developed detailed roadmaps for our different GHG emission scopes:
Created a fully auditable and traceable CO2e tracker report. We now know the CO2e run rate of the different Group Lactalis operations in the UK (e.g. Lactalis UK & Ireland, Lactalis Nestlé Chilled Dairy and Lactalis Ingredients). This step is fundamental in helping us make progress.
Reduced the number of products that are reworked, moving from from 63 to 34. Products are typically reworked to meet customer requirements in terms of case size/mix of products. Fewer products reworked in this way saves on packaging, labels and warehouse movement.
Consolidated our CO2e footprint by removing 3 of our warehouses and integrating that volume into 1. This means we have further improved our inbound carbon footprint and outbound pallet efficiency with more case on pallets enabling us to deliver a reduction of our carbon footprint in excess of 500 tonnes per annum.
Created backhauling opportunities for our Aberystwyth fleet – we work in partnership with our third party logistics provider to backhaul goods from the warehouse to other drop locations on the way to factory. This constant transport loop means less trucks on the road and less CO2e in the atmosphere.
Animal Welfare & Life On Farm
In 2019, we published our first ever Sourcing Standard, intended to clearly set out areas of focus and key initiatives with our partnering farms such as carbon auditing, decreasing antibiotic usage, mobility and body condition scoring and the ban on bull calf euthanasia.
In the latest 2023 edition, we further build on the standards with the aim of delivering high standards of animal welfare, reduced carbon emissions and sustainable farm businesses.
Animal welfare initiatives
Alongside the Sourcing Standard, we also strive to improve standards through our Lactalis Development Group which is available to all of our partnering farms. Through workshops and farm visits and our Milk Supply team, we seek to share industry best practice and foster debate and discussion leading to better outcomes. We ask that our producers attend a minimum of two Lactalis meetings per year for this purpose.
This principle is globally recognised as the gold standard in animal welfare. The standards encompass animal mental and physical well-being, and are:
As a way of measuring animal welfare, we ask our farmers to collate information on a variety of welfare indicators. Scoring welfare indicators regularly, such as body condition and mobility, allow for early action and improve overall welfare on farm.
1. Comprehensive Herd Health Plans which are to be drawn up in conjunction with the farm’s vet. The plan must be reviewed annually taking consideration the herd’s health welfare and milking records.
2. Mobility scoring of both milking and dry (non-lactating) cows is to be undertaken at least quarterly with summary data made available in the Herd Health Plan. Scoring should be to the AHDB (Agriculture and Horticultural Development Board) scoring scheme and should be conducted by an accredited RoMS (Register of Mobility Scorers) accredited scorer.
3. Body condition scoring of the milking and dry cow herds is to be undertaken at least quarterly with summary data made available in the Herd Health Plan. Scoring must be to the Agriculture and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB) scoring scheme. At least one scoring should be conducted by a suitably-trained independent person.
We want to be assured the milk is produced and handled in an appropriate manner from farm to factory.
Our supplying farms are regularly audited to ensure they share our commitment to the best care and treatment of their dairy cows.
The Red Tractor farm assurance scheme is industry-recognised with standards covering food safety, animal welfare, traceability and environmental protection.
Farms are all rigorously assessed and independently certified in accordance with ISO 17065 at least every 18 months.
Every 3 years, each farm participates in an in-depth Lactalis farm audit. In addition to a Red Tractor audit, our farmers also have regular visits from our dedicated in-house milk supply team. With our milk pool of 150 farmers, our farm management team are able to build strong relationships with our partnering farms; we have a very collaborative approach and aim to be active participants in our farming communities.
Our Farm Supply Managers gather and discuss just short of 200 pieces of information from animal numbers, health, weight and milking patterns, to breeding practices, calf wellbeing, feed and feeding. The Herd Health plan is also reviewed and discussed and welfare outcome scores are noted.
We are part of the UK Plastics Pact initiative, run by WRAP and supported by Ellen MacArthur Foundation and also members of the On Pack Recycling Label (OPRL) scheme.
As members of the OPRL scheme, we are rolling out recycling information to consumers on our packs.
Our Galbani Mozzarella Grated cheese is now fully recyclable front of store. We have moved from a triple-ply nylon laminate, which is not recyclable to a fully recyclable polyethylene (PE) mono structure with built-in barrier properties.
On Galbani Burrata 150g, we have moved from a non-recyclable labelled pot (polystyrene) to a fully recyclable printed pot (polypropylene).
We have managed to decrease the quantity of plastics used in our Président Emmental Slices packaging and moved to a fully recyclable base! To make it happen, we moved from a multi-material plastic composition (PET and PE) to a single material virgin PET tray, which not only now makes our tray recyclable but will also help save over 560kgs of plastic per year with this product alone.
We continue to work on reducing plastic in our portfolio, in 2022 we removed the plastic lid from our Galbani Mozzarella Latte di Bufala Mini and switched to a new recyclable printed pot. 12 other countries within Lactalis have rolled this out. By removing the plastic lids in the UK, we have taken out 770Kg of plastic per year.
This has massive economic, social, and environmental impacts, and in the UK alone more than 10 million tonnes of food is wasted each year from farm to fork, worth over £20 billion a year.
In 2022, Lactalis in the UK, signed up to the Food Waste Reduction Roadmap, developed by IGD (Institute of Grocery Distribution) and WRAP to tackle food waste in the UK.
This Roadmap is tackling UK food waste and contributing towards delivering United Nations SDG 12.3. With less than 10 years to achieve this ambition, we have committed to the Roadmap by: adopting a food waste reduction target with a goal of achieving a reduction of 25% by 2030.
2022 RESULT: 0.73% OF TURNOVER
2021 RESULT: 1.03% of turnover (2021)
GOAL: -25% by 2030 (0.80% of turnover)
2022 RESULT: 0.07% OF TURNOVER
2021 RESULT: 0.16% of turnover (2021)
GOAL: -25% by 2030 (0.05% of turnover)
In 2021, LNCD waste as a % of turnover was 1.03%. In 2022, the business achieved a reduction with the actual figure at 0.73% of turnover. So, LNCD is currently meeting its 2030 goal of reducing waste by 25%.
In 2021, LUK waste as a % of turnover was 0.16%. In 2022, the business achieved a reduction with the actual figure at 0.07% of turnover. This currently puts us on track to deliver against our 2030 goal of reducing waste by 25%.
Our communities include our 550 colleagues, the towns and villages in which we are based and also the wider agriculture and dairy sector. These communities are where we seek to focus our efforts to optimise our contribution and to increase the impact and benefit of what we do.
Fundamentally, Lactalis remains a family-owned business, with headquarters in Laval and managed now by Emmanuel Besnier, the great grandson of André Besnier. It’s this family ownership, long-term view, global scale and dynamism which makes working for Lactalis so unique. The business is constantly evolving but its core values of ambition, commitment and with simplicity remain the same.
One of the ways we look to show our ambition is in the development of our people. We want to help ouremployees thrive. We foster talent through people-centred leadership – driven by our MDs, Group HR Director and Board – and through access to many learning and training opportunities. Generally speaking, we look to develop skills in 3 ways and across all levels of the business.
The Lactalis leadership model gives existing managers and our leaders of tomorrow, a roadmap to engage them on the skills we’re looking for in order to grow and develop their career within the business. The model is based upon 4 key leadership areas; Care, Share, Dare & Inspire and each has a number of behaviours to model what good leadership looks like. Throughout 2023, we will be training teams on the new model. Prior to that, both businesses had invested significantly in leadership training with over 50 Lactalis UK & Ireland senior managers trained in leadership skills.
21 members of the Lactalis UK & Ireland team were promoted or moved to a new role or function to develop their career or competencies within the business, that equates to an impressive 18% of the workforce based at our head office in Redhill, Surrey. We also welcomed 16 new recruits from outside of the organisation and 6 new interns across the business to hone their skills in practice as part of a wider degree.
The Lactalis Group has invested in an online training portal called The Learning Factory which is an effective tool for Lactalis staff to upskill themselves and to take ownership of their own learning and development. Worldwide there are 19,000 learners across Lactalis, from 77 countries (and these numbers are increasing). In November 2021, there were 6 courses in English. Now there are over 150 courses to choose from.
At our cheddar factories in Stranraer we currently have 5 apprentices and a number of others informally being developed. These include:
Finally, linked to our wish to be advocates for the equal importance of mental health (as well as physical health), we continued in 2022 with accredited Mental Health First Aid training. We want our businesses to be great places to work with an enjoyable and supportive company culture; so we have developed the skills of employee volunteers so that we can use their empathy and sensitivity to be the first responders to any mental health issue and to signpost how to get help. We now have 20 Mental Health First Aiders in place.
We support local charities and community groups that are on our doorsteps and often dear to our own colleagues. As significant local employers, we invest for the long-term in our people and preserve local cheesemaking and dairy expertise that in some instances has been present since the late 19th century. We also recognise the need to support the livelihoods of our 150 supplying farmers, many of whose farms have been in their stewardship for multiple generations.
As a leading dairy company, we are closely linked to the agricultural and farming world. We are therefore proud partners of RHET, the Royal Highland Education Trust that helps educate young people on farming practices and the working countryside. Also, we support RSABI (originally established as the Royal Scottish Agricultural Benevolent Institution). RSABI supports people from Scottish agriculture emotionally, practically and financially in times of need.
At Lactalis, our people and their points of view matter. Every 2 years colleagues decide upon our charity partner.
Via a 2-stage vote, we have successfully partnered with NSPCC in 2019-2020 and our current charity partner Anthony Nolan, in 2021-2022 and for a second term, 2023-2024. At our factories, we have also chosen to support Macmillan Cancer Support and the Prostate Cancer Charity.
Colleagues make a difference through our social, health and wellness team who together organise fun, active, wellbeing events which are extremely well supported not just by our people but by their families.
In addition to our support for the charities close to our colleague’s hearts and our core business we have two charitable organisations that we work closely with on an ongoing basis: FareShare – the food surplus charity helping over 2,000 frontline charities across the UK access food for free. We are also a partner to GroceryAid, the industry charity that helps colleagues working in the grocery sector access free emotional, financial and practical support and more.
For the 2nd year running a brilliant 40-strong team at Lactalis UK and Ireland and Lactalis Nestlé Chilled Dairy, joined by our colleagues around the world at Lactalis Group took part in a range of activities helping the fight against waste pollution in support of Let’s Do It World. Our teams were invited to spend an afternoon in September 2022 at Earlswood Lakes (close to our Redhill Head Office), getting involved in three different activities, in conjunction with the Greenspaces team at Reigate & Banstead Borough Council.
Working with our local Greenspaces Officer, we split into three teams and took part in a litter pick, filling 29 sacks of rubbish, to be sorted for recycling in line with our ongoing commitment to sustainable packaging and educating consumers to close the loop. We also removed Himalayan Balsam weed and helped promote biodiversity through the creation and painting of nestboxes and creating bug hotels using salvaged materials.
A great day all round, the perfect opportunity to spend time together as a team, having fun, all while helping the local community!
In January 2023, Lactalis UK & Ireland, were recognised by GroceryAid, the industry charity as a gold-level supporter.
To achieve this status, organisations need to 1) raise awareness 2) fundraise and 3) volunteer. Over the last 3 years, we’ve grown from being a bronze to a silver and now a gold-level supporter. We’re proud to partner this charity and support the fantastic work they do to provide practical, emotional and financial support to colleagues working in the grocery industry.
Over 2021 and 2022, Lactalis UK & Ireland and Lactalis Nestlé Chilled Dairy raised a staggering £30k from employee donations and company funding for the Anthony Nolan charity.
This charity was voted on by our employees in memory of our former colleague, Julien Desilles, who sadly passed away from blood cancer in November 2020.
Monies were raised from a huge number of different activities organised by our social, health and wellness team including a month of well-being activities in May (May Madness), a Sports Day and a Walking Together month in September. There have also been live sport events, pub quizzes and social evenings in London.
In November 2022, Lactalis in the UK celebrated its 5 year anniversary of partnering with FareShare, the food surplus charity.
Every week we offer FareShare first refusal of all of our unused or unwanted food – food that would have otherwise gone to waste (surplus for purpose). FareShare then distribute it to frontline charities across the UK who in turn help those most in need.
We’re so consistent and reliable in our support of the charity that we’re able to use the Leading Food Partner FareShare logo. An accolade that is given to food suppliers who consistently donate over a period of 6 months. We have been a leading food partner to FareShare in both 2021 and 2022.
Our main raw material is produced through farming and so we have a strong relationship with and dependency on the natural environment.
We source milk from around 150 farmers in the UK, local to our production sites, as well as a range of ingredients and products from other suppliers.
Our customers can be confident that our range of products will be high quality, safely packaged, nutritious and delicious.
Finding The Right Pack
* Ambition on a set of 23 countries accounting for 85% of Lactalis Group turnover in 2019. All acquisitions since December 2019 excluded at this stage.
** Ambition set at Lactalis Group level. All acquisitions since December 2019 excluded at this stage.
At Lactalis, people matter. We are a family business connected by shared values, ethics and a passion for making products that bring people closer together.