Sysco has embraced sustainability throughout its history, beginning with long-standing commitments to continuous improvements in food safety and distribution chain efficiency.
Over the past decade, we've expanded our endeavors to address issues such as sustainable sourcing and energy efficiency. Among our signature initiatives:
- Integrated Pest Management: We encourage the responsible use of inputs such as pesticides, nutrients, energy and water in the production of Sysco Brand canned and frozen fruits, vegetables and potatoes.
- Energy management: Sysco's Broadline and SYGMA warehouses and redistribution centers have reduced kilowatt hour consumption by 20 percent since 2006 despite a 27 percent increase in warehouse volumes over the same period. The net effect equates to energy savings of nearly 40 percent.
- Hunger relief efforts: Our partnership with Share Our Strength, a leading national nonprofit organization devoted to ending childhood hunger, allows us to better contribute to the food needs of the communities we serve. We have donated more than $5 million to this cause since 2002.
- Recyling: In FY2014 Sysco implemented a comprehensive recycling program at our U.S. Broadline facilities to remove recyclables from our solid waste stream and increase our recycling revenues and tonnages. The initiative will be implemented in five phases, focusing first on corrugated and shrink-wrap commodities, which represent the largest portion of our waste stream; eventually covering the full range of recyclables from office paper to plastics, light bulbs to electronics.
Sysco's embrace of a more formal, focused commitment to sustainability over the past three years has been empowered and validated by customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders and other stakeholders. We believe our practice must generate processes and goals that can be embedded in our operations, supporting our mission to market and deliver great products with exceptional service.
Our sustainability strategy complements and supports our five-point business strategy and our vision to be our customers' most valued and trusted business partner.
Everywhere we operate, guiding principles for sustainability influence our conduct:
- We are committed to ensuring a reliable and safe supply of food that meets the evolving needs of our customers.
- We are committed to creating positive change in our organization, the environment and the communities we serve, a commitment that ultimately enhances the value of our business.
- We focus our sustainability efforts and community engagement to achieve strategic and positive impacts on the food service industry.
- Our sustainability programs are based on sound science and have meaningful metrics. We are committed to communicating our results.
We have identified three aspects of our business where the potential impact is greatest and the best opportunities exist to improve sustainability within our company.
We adopt the best practices of the industry to supply food and other products that meet high standards of safety, quality, traceability, environmental stewardship and economic sustainability.
Sysco has always been committed to supplying customers with food products that meet high standards of safety, quality and traceability. With the growth of the sustainable food movement, an increasing number of our customers also want products that demonstrate social and environmental stewardship. Striving to be our customers' most valued business partner and use industry best practices, we maintain relationships with growers, ranchers, processors, foodservice peers and influencers across the nation to deliver the most responsibly produced food possible and participate actively in industry discussions.
We use proven technologies to continuously improve resource efficiency across our distribution system of warehouses, refrigeration and modes of transportation.
Reducing the environmental impact of our operations doesn't just show our commitment to the earth. It also benefits our bottom line. With an operational footprint spanning more than 190 locations throughout the United States, Canada, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, the Bahamas and Central America, Sysco dispatches about 8,500 trucks to purchase and deliver food and other supplies to more than 425,000 customers. We continuously strive to improve resource efficiencies in our logistics chain and in our warehouses.
We are committed to the well-being of the communities affected by our business, including our customers, associates, suppliers and those who frequent our customers' outlets.