Leading snacks provider The Hershey Company announced today a series of new environmental sustainability commitments, including setting science-based emission reduction targets, and implementing sustainable packaging solutions.

Michele Buck, The Hershey Company President and Chief Executive Officer, said:

“Climate change is one of the most urgent threats to our planet that we face today. In order to deliver on our purpose to make more moments of goodness, we must operate with sustainability at the forefront and commit to doing our part to address climate change. We will continue to use our scale and apply the full force of our business to reduce our greenhouse emissions and drive climate action forward.”

Hershey’s new climate goals follow the company’s 2019 commitment to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), a collaboration between CDP, World Resources Institute (WRI), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), with the goal to establish science-based environmental target setting as a standard corporate practice. The new goals announced today include targets to reduce Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by more than 50% and Scope 3 emissions by 25% by 2030, compared to a 2018 baseline.

According to the company, the new emissions reduction goals are in line with the global best practice of the Paris Climate Agreement, to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C.

Hershey outlined several initiatives it will undertake in order to achieve its new climate commitments, encompassing renewable energy and energy efficiency practices, sustainable packaging, and deforestation.

The company revealed that it has signed two power purchase agreements (PPAs) that will enable the construction of two new utility-scale solar farms, and is pursuing a series of energy efficiency projects worldwide.

Hershey said that it achieved its 2025 target to reduce packaging weight by 25 million pounds five years ahead of schedule, and has set a new goal for a further 25 million pound reduction by 2030, and the company is also targeting 100% of its plastic packaging to be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2030.

Hershey also unveiled a new deforestation policy, committing to end deforestation across its supply chain by 2030. The company stated that its commitment to end deforestation applies to all suppliers across its raw material supply chains, though it will prioritize achieving independent verification of compliance with this policy for the commodities in its supply chain that present the greatest risk of contributing to deforestation, including cocoa, palm oil, pulp & paper (packaging), and soy. 

Jeff King, Senior Director of Global Sustainability and Social Impact, said:

“These environmental commitments are critical to the long-term sustainability of our business. The work is interconnected across our business and requires us to bring together all efforts across the company, from manufacturing, energy buying and packaging to make it work seamlessly to reach our goals.”