Orkla is making good progress in its efforts to integrate sustainability into its operations and make it an increasingly important source of innovation and growth.
“We at Orkla want to be part of the movement that must take place if we are to succeed in transitioning to sustainable production and consumption. In all the 30 countries in which Orkla has a presence, we are now mobilising our resources to develop products that promote a healthy, sustainable lifestyle,” relates Ellen Behrens, VP Corporate Social Responsibility at Orkla.
Orkla is working to make sustainability activities an integral part of its operations, and has set ambitious, but necessary goals for its efforts up to 2025.
Defining sustainable products
“Sustainability is a general concept, and in 2018 we have drawn up criteria for our way of defining sustainable products at Orkla. These criteria help us to identify important improvement initiatives, and give our innovation work a direction. They also help to highlight the commercial effect of our focus on sustainability,” Ms Behrens says.
To be classified as sustainable, the product must satisfy the criteria in at least two of the following three categories: sustainable raw materials, sustainable packaging and products that promote a healthy lifestyle.
Still a way to go when it comes to packaging
Through a variety of collaborative initiatives, Orkla is actively exploring the possibilities of developing new types of packaging based on renewable and recycled materials.
“Over 90 per cent of the packaging we use can now be recovered, and we are collaborating closely with researchers, organisations, other companies and external experts on finding solutions of the environmental challenges posed by plastic,” Ms Behrens recounts. “At the same time, we still have a way to go to achieve our target of 50 per cent plastic packaging made from recycled or renewable materials. In order to succeed, we need to share knowledge and dare to be open about common industry challenges.”
Halving Orkla’s greenhouse gas emissions
Orkla wants to do its share in achieving the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions that is essential for meeting the targets set in the Paris Agreement, and is already seeing significant effects from the actions that have been implemented:
«By buying certificates of origin for renewable electricity, phasing out fossil fuel oil and carrying out energy efficiency programmes, we have reduced the greenhouse gas emissions from Orkla’s operations by more than 50 per cent in the past four years, and around 40 per cent of the energy we use is renewable,” says Ellen Behrens.
Growth in plant-based food
“Plant-based food can be both healthy and climate-friendly, and the fact that the sale of this type of product also offers potential for growth is an added benefit. We’re very pleased that we achieved more than 50 per cent growth in turnover from vegan and vegetarian products under our two brands Naturli’ and Anamma in the past year,” Ellen Behrens says in conclusion.