skip to Main Content
MSJ NEWS see latest news

Sustainability Study Shows Food Industry Has Room For Improvement

  • Wall Street Journal evaluates 5,500 companies on environmental, social, and governance metrics, and only one food company cracks the top 100
  • Innovators have been developing healthier foods, better packaging, and other sustainability improvements, which can help improve a company’s image
  • IMF says COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted issues in the global supply chain and presented an opportunity to revamp the global food system

A recent study measuring a number of sustainability metrics has highlighted the need for greater improvements in the food industry. Of the 5,500 publicly traded companies evaluated by the Wall Street Journal on environmental, social, and governance matters, Nestle was the only one to be ranked in the top 100.

Hank Cardello, a former food industry executive who now advocates for social change in these businesses, responded in Forbes by urging food companies to take steps toward improving their sustainability on social, health, and environmental issues. He suggests that the industry’s risk aversion typically results in limited action on such matters, although some companies have taken bolder actions. Cardello argues that companies that support sustainability initiatives can also benefit from an improved public image, greater worker satisfaction, and increased revenues.

Food sustainability initiatives have often sought to address climate change and have recently included developments such as plant-based proteins and meats raised from animal cells rather than livestock. Innovators have also sustainability training for coffee growers and translucent paper packaging that presents a viable alternative to plastic.

The COVID-19 pandemic and its associated disruption of global food supply chains may also spur greater innovation and changes in the food industry. The International Monetary Fund suggests that this crisis offers a “unique opportunity to to transform the global food system and make it resilient to future shocks, ensuring environmentally sustainable and healthy nutrition for all.” The IMF says shifts in the food system could include more resilient food supply chains, regenerative farming, increased conservation efforts, and initiatives to promote healthier diets with less consumption of meat or processed food in wealthy nations.

Spread the Word

More To Explore

Expert Summaries

Know Your Competitors

By Denis Jakuc 

There are tons of benefits to knowing who your competitors are—what they’re offering, their strengths and weaknesses. That knowledge can help you make your products and services stand out,

Latest News

Join with Free InnovatorsLINK Account

Start accessing all the free member benefits and valuable content on the InnovatorsLINK platform. Create a BizLINK listing to boost brand exposure, receive the weekly Main Street Journal newsletter, engage in forums, get full access to free content, and more.