As part of its commitment to its ambitious 2030 Sustainability strategy, Huhtamaki submitted a series of Climate Change mitigation targets in 2020. These have now been approved and validated by the globally recognized Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Huhtamaki is committed to limiting the global temperature rise to well below 2°C in its operations and value chain. It will reduce its direct and electricity greenhouse gas emissions by 27.5% by 2030 and greenhouse gas emissions from its product end-of-life 13.5% also by the same timeframe. The targets are key stepping blocks to Huhtamaki's ability to deliver on its 2030 Strategy and its ambition to become the first choice in sustainable packaging solutions.
Huhtamaki aims for carbon-neutral production by 2030
Sustainability lies at the center of Huhtamaki's 2030 Strategy. Setting science-based reduction targets and aiming for carbon-neutral production are an essential part of the company's 2030 sustainability ambition, published in March 2020. The Science Based Targets initiative has now approved Huhtamaki's emission reduction targets.
As part of this, Huhtamaki commits to reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions 27.5% by 2030 from a 2019 base year. Huhtamaki also reserves to reduce absolute scope 3 GHG emissions from end-of-life treatment of sold products by 13.5% within the same timeframe. Huhtamaki commits that 70% of its suppliers by spend covering purchased good and services will have science-based targets by 2026.
"We are fully committed to supporting the transition to a zero-carbon economy and helping achieve transformation at the pace and scale that is needed. Our own emissions reduction targets are grounded in climate science and having the Science Based Targets initiative approve our targets is an important milestone on our journey towards carbon-neutral production," says Charles Héaulmé, president and chief executive officer of Huhtamaki.
The majority of Huhtamaki's greenhouse gas emissions come from the company's value chain and are linked to raw materials. To reduce the emissions related to its raw materials, Huhtamaki is committed to ensuring that most of its purchases of goods and services are from companies that have signed up to the Science Based Targets initiative. Huhtamaki's commitment to have 100% of its products designed to be recyclable, compostable or reusable by 2030 contributes towards achieving the 13.5% reduction of absolute scope three greenhouse gas emissions from end-of-life treatment of sold products.
From its operations and electricity supply (scopes 1 and 2), Huhtamaki will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 27.5% by 2030 from a 2019 base year. Contributing to this target is the company's commitment to use 100% renewable electricity by 2030 and its continuous efforts to improve the energy efficiency of its operations. Significant progress on the use of renewable energy is already made in multiple manufacturing units in South Africa and India, where solar panels have been installed and generate electricity for the facilities. Huhtamaki is also actively working towards its renewable energy target by investigating Virtual Power Purchase Agreements in North America and Europe.
Huhtamaki protects food, people and the planet
Packaging is an essential part of the food system and plays an important role in preventing food waste, accounting for 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions. By ensuring hygiene and food safety, packaging also plays an instrumental role in driving access to food for all. With smart and sustainably produced packaging and an appropriate waste collection and recycling infrastructure, the negative impact of packaging on the environment can be minimized without compromising the benefits.
"At Huhtamaki, we believe in protecting food, people, and the planet. We know that the value of packaging is more than its impact on the environment and are committed to further reducing that impact by minimizing the negative impacts of our operations, creating a circular economy, and collaborating across the value chain to drive systemic change. Aiming for carbon-neutral production is ambitious and sits at the very heart of our sustainability journey. It is an important part of the work we do to minimize the carbon footprint of our operations around the world," says Thomasine Kamerling, executive vice president of Sustainability and Communications.
Huhtamaki is among the over 1,800 companies committed to the Science Based Targets initiative and among the about 900 companies that have had their science-based targets approved. Huhtamaki is among the first packaging companies to have its science-based targets approved. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets are considered "science-based" if they are in line with what the latest climate science says is necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement - to limit global warming to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C.