Most food companies have weak or no water management programs, report says

By: Trademagazin editor Date: 2022. 11. 24. 09:40

The impact of drought on food production has been especially prevalent this year on agriculture in the western U.S. It has contributed to a poor growing season for crops such as lettuce and apples, leading to rising produce prices during the fall

Food companies are largely unprepared to handle shortages. A report published by Morningstar said 60% of packaged food companies have weak or no comprehensive water management practices in their direct operations and 43% in their supply chain. The financial services firm analyzed the practices of 114 packaged food companies around the world and graded food companies on how they handle water risks on a 0-100 scale.

The average score for food companies was 43 for their own operations and 46 for how they handle water risks in their supply chains. General Mills scored 76 for its operations and 82 for its supply chain. Tyson received a 61 for its own operations and a 70 for its supply chain. Thus General Mills and Tyson Foods are two CPGs managing water risks and contributing to solutions above the industry standard through their operations and supply chains.

General Mills’ partnership with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to advance regenerative agriculture efforts was highlighted as a useful example for conserving water in its supply chain, the report said. The report said both General Mills and Tyson currently lack sustainability requirements for the production of specific products, which it said would improve how water is managed in their supply chains.

Water challenges such as drought are posing a significant risk to the future of food production, with investors and other stakeholders putting pressure on CPGs to curtail their use.

Food Dive

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