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Danone 2011 Sustainability Report > 4 strategic priorities

Danone’s motto? “Bring health through food to as many people as possible.” As the Danone 2011 Sustainability Report “Strategy and Performance” says, this happens to be “more than ever in line with the food and nutrition objectives of health authorities in every country in which (the group) operates”. Let’s take a look at how Danone supplies the demand.


Here are the three “major focuses to Danone’s strategy on nutrition and health”:

• "in-depth understanding of the nutrition and health issues in each country in which the group does business"
• "a unique line of appropriate products meeting the needs of populations throughout their lifetime"
• "encouraging healthy eating habits by responsible product communication practices and strong involvement in information and education."

This strategy is based on governance and research, but also on stakeholders engagement, of course. So in most countries in which Danone operates, the group analyzes “local authorities nutrition and health policies, current national programs” and the latest data in epidemiology, food consumption, sociology etc. But that’s not all. The group also consults experts to identify deficiencies in specific populations and adapt their food, especially for babies, children and the elderly. This analysis covered 37 countries and 94% of sales in 2011.

Furthermore, the group highlighted its dedication to transparency. Over 90% of Danone products in sales provide nutrition information. Health claims are based on “recognized scientific data” and provide “precise information about the appropriate serving size to be consumed”.

In 2011, Danone ran 219 “information and educational programs” to encourage healthy lifestyle, “potentially reaching almost 700 million people”. 47% of employees also had access to workplace health programs in 2011 – including conferences, doctors’ visits, balanced meals, break rooms, fitness equipment etc.


In these views, it is therefore important Danone can reach as many consumers as possible. This is why the group has been focusing on increasing its target by improving its distribution and product offers, with programs like Route To Market - new distribution models to cover points of sale and reach consumers that had been out of range before now – or “Base of the Pyramid”, launched in India “in
the form of a new production unit and a dedicated local team”.
The FCPR (Fonds Commun de Placement à Risques ), danone.communities venture capital fund, invested in 7 water & nutrition projects in 2007 in countries like Cambodia, India, Mexico, Bangladesh, China & Senegal.


As “Danone products are all derived from nature and its cycles”, the group does commit to respect the environment. Since 2008, they reduced carbon footprint by 27.5%, in line with the 2008-12 goal of -30%.

If the energy consumption dropped by 7.6% throughout last year, it’s part of a 45% total decrease since 2000. Water consumption has followed a similar patter, dropping by 5.2% last year as part of a 41% decrease since 2000. 87.4% of factory waste has also been recovered, vs. 64.3 in 2000.

To achieve such goals, Danone manages the “Nature Plan”, part of which includes the compensation of 1400 managers for successfully reducing their BU carbon footprint.


2011 was the last year of the HR strategic plan initiated in 2008 for the 2009-2011 period. It contained three focus areas :

• Prevent stress at work and improve working conditions

• Improve health and well-being at work.

Throughout the Dan’s Care program, Danone’s challenge is “to provide basic medical insurance and other benefits” to all 100.000 employees by 2013. By 2011, eight countries (China, Spain, Indonesia, Mexico, Brazil, Poland, Russia and Saudi Arabia) had begun implementing it, meaning 28.000 employees actually benefitted from better medical insurance in 2011.

• Ensure the health and well-being of group employees “by promoting best practices linked to good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle”.

90% of Danone’s employees (except employees of Unimilk companies) benefit from staff representation bodies (unionized or not) so they can discuss “economic and social related matters at local level”. Regarding the development of labor relations within the group, Danone and the IUF signed “the first worldwide agreement on health, safety, working conditions and stress”. This covers all 100,000 Danone employees in over 90 countries “and is based on best practices observed in both mature and emerging countries.”

For the third consecutive year, Danone was recognized by the Dow Jones Index, and rose by eight points in the CDP. Learn more about how the group has been contributing to advancing the sustainability agenda throughout 2011 by consulting the full report attached to this post.

Download the attached file: DanoneSustainableReport2011.pdf

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