We are delighted to see that the world’s leading premium drinks company, Diageo, has committed to acquiring cream from sustainable sources for its Baileys brand.
Friday nights are for laughing late with friends, not for working late, especially with a bottle of Baileys Irish Cream, according to Diageo. At least it’s good to know that your choice of tipple, enjoyed responsibly of course, can ensure many a fun Friday night for years to come.
The cream of the crop
The commitment was announced on Tuesday in its newly titled report, Sustainability & Responsibility 2011. This strategic name change from Corporate Citizenship report to Sustainability & Responsibility report appears to reflect a more holistic approach to sustainability, which is similar to our own at Fairfood International. As the owner of other well-known brands, such as Smirnoff, Captain Morgan and Johnnie Walker’s Whisky, Diageo is hugely influential within the beverage industry. Fairfood International has worked with Diageo to employ sustainable means of production since 2007. We are particularly interested in hearing more from the spirits giant about its efforts to increase the sustainability of all of its priority ingredients, including sugarcane, sorghum and malting barley, especially as the company continues to expand globally.
In the midst of these ongoing dialogues, we are pleased to see that the company has committed to begin sourcing its cream, sustainably, from Irish dairy company, Glanbia, as stated in their report. Although, the sustainability standards and criteria related to this cream commitment appear to be unclear, we look forward to more explicit and measurable policies in the coming year.
Let’s do this again
Furthermore, the company has pledged to enhance systems and controls related to corruption and their corporate tax policies. We are interested to see more explicit commitments on how these systems and controls will ensure against future issues related to corruption; especially since Diageo has recently been in the news for a $16 million settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for allegations concerning tax benefit related corruption. Undoubtedly, there is room for improvement on Diageo’s stated approach to tax affairs, which has not changed substantially since the publication of its previous Corporate Citizenship report in 2010. We believe this to be a critical and opportune time for Diageo to adopt a more transparent and sustainable position with regards to both its anti-corruption and tax policies. In the hope to aid the process we have shared recommendations from the new tax responsibility report by ActionAid, written in collaboration with Fairfood International and UK-based NGO FairPensions. To learn more about these specific recommendations visit our blog.
As Diageo continues to expand globally, we look forward to working together on its next sustainability commitments.
Photography: Nanagyei (CC License)< Back