More and more consumers are consciously choosing products and brands made by manufacturers who credibly fulfil their responsibility towards nature and society. The focus is increasingly on the origin of raw materials and the social and ecological conditions in which products are manufactured. We assume responsibility for people and the environment – also with regard to future generations. At Hochland we want to function as a model for sustainability and recycling management.
Hochland has developed its sustainability strategy by means of a systematic process. The aim was to anchor sustainable corporate management along the entire value chain. To this end, Hochland has created the basis for a materiality matrix in 2016 and 2017 with a materiality analysis, a cultural analysis and a stakeholder dialogue. In this matrix, Hochland first named 23 relevant fields of action, then narrowed them down to 13 fields and finally prioritised 6 of the fields of action in an internal selection process. In 2019, Hochland reviewed the results again. The company interviewed 50 internal and external stakeholders in a further stakeholder survey. The materiality analysis derived from this has been reviewed by Hochland with regard to two aspects in particular: Firstly, with regard to a holistic view of the effects of entrepreneurial action – both within the company and externally (holistic impact). Secondly, with regard to the orientation towards ideas relating to the circular economy. As a result, Hochland has updated the fields of action in the materiality matrix and confirmed the six fields of action that had already been given high priority:
Milk and animal welfare
CO2 and climate
Employee health and safety
Portfolio management for sustainable products
Prioritised Fields of Action
Field of Action: Milk and Animal Welfare
Hochland takes a self-critical look at the global consequences of European milk production and milk trade. That is why Hochland considers the effects of milk production on humans, animals and the environment. In the future, the company will increase its influence on how its most important raw material is produced. To this end Hochland is building value alliances with farmers, processing suppliers and other stakeholders.
Field of Action: CO2 and Climate
Due to its value chain, Hochland has a considerable CO2 footprint. The aim of the Hochland climate strategy is to make the company CO2 neutral. All areas of CO2 emissions, their measurement and the reduction and compensation of CO2 are examined. In particular, the areas of raw materials, packaging, energy, mobility and logistics are scrutinised.
Field of Action: Employee Health and Safety at Work
Work must not only not make you sick. This is why both the maintenance and promotion of employee health are important assets for Hochland. Hochland promotes health and employee satisfaction by means of prevention and incentives for increased personal responsibility. The focus here is on ergonomic work, healthy employee catering and measures to promote health and exercise.
Field of Action: Portfolio Management for Sustainable Products
In view of changing eating habits and taking into account the environmental impact of its own products, Hochland would like to expand its portfolio with even more sustainable offers. This can be done above and beyond the raw material milk and the product of cheese. For future-oriented products Hochland will seek to reduce the consumption of resources and the generation of CO2 and methane in the production process.
Field of Action: Stakeholder Dialogue
As a company, Hochland conducts relationships with many stakeholders. With the introduction of a professional stakeholder participation process, Hochland is aiming to establish a systematic approach. Hochland sees this as an opportunity to develop as an organisation and to recognise, anticipate and meet the needs of society and the environment even more effectively.
Field of Action: Business Relations
Relations with business partners are essential for Hochland. Hochland intends to develop its business relationships with suppliers and customers in the future in the form of collaborative partnerships. These partnerships should be based on shared values, long-term and mutually beneficial. There should be more joint development of products and business processes with customers in order to generate innovations together. Sustainability requirements should be taken into account even more strongly with regard to purchasing strategies and purchasing conditions.
The Hochland Sustainability Programme
Hochland has advanced its sustainability goals in 2019 and adopted the Hochland Sustainability Programme on the basis of the updated sustainability strategy. The aim of the programme is to manage sustainability performance.
The sustainability programme offers orientation with regard to the overarching ambitions concerning four areas. Hochland continuously sets itself goals to achieve these ambitions.
THE HOCHLAND MATERIALITY MATRIX
Note: When you select the colored dots, the respective fields of action are displayed.
The priority areas of action on which Hochland reports in this sustainability report are highlighted. In each case, Hochland has identified the greatest potential for action and the greatest possible effects. Consequently these fields are therefore given greater weight. For reasons of transparency, however, Hochland also reports on the other fields of action.
THE MATERIALITY MATRIX AS A BAR CHART
Through sustainable business management, we are safeguarding the continued existence of Hochland and preserving the livelihoods of our children and grandchildren and from this we derive from the right to continue growing. Our business decisions are based on the principles of the circular economy.
Our employees are the key to our success and we want to offer them meaningful work in a health-promoting environment. We continuously take measures to promote health, occupational safety and employee participation.
As a Leader in Milk, we develop sustainable products and business models for our customers. We are continuously pushing ahead with the extensification of agricultural milk production, always taking animal welfare into account.
We want to offer products that not only delight our customers, but also leave the smallest possible ecological footprint. Our goal is to reduce the emissions resulting from all business activities by at least 31 percent by 2030 (base year 2015).
|Hochland is drawing up a sustainability strategy until 2018 as part of the corporate strategy.1|
|Hochland is to establish a risk radar by 2018 to identify current and future risks.1|
1 The process will be continued on an ongoing basis, but it will no longer be listed as a strategic goal in the sustainability programme.
|Target not achieved||Target partially achieved||Target largely achieved||Target fully achieved|
|Hochland SE is drawing up a Vision 2025 for 2020 – Hochland Deutschland will derive its own strategic goals from this by the end of 2020.|
|Hochland is examining the possibilities of implementing an integrated management system by 2020.|
|Hochland will install a sustainability advisory board consisting of internal and external members by mid-2021.
From 2022, Hochland will receive qualitative feedback on its sustainability activities from the sustainability advisory board and other stakeholders at least once a year during a stakeholder day.