Commitment to eliminate deforestation
During 2020, we examined the deforestation risk within our supply chains in order to ensure the effectiveness and efficiency of our current and future measures. The aim of this assessment was to identify any adverse impacts our company may have on forests, gain insights into our actual impacts and understand where our greatest level of influence is throughout the global supply chains of the ALDI SOUTH Group.
At the beginning of 2022, we will publish an International Position Statement comprising the results of our deforestation risk assessment and commodity specific milestones. The statement will set out how we aim to eliminate deforestation from our high priority supply chains by 2030.
Our major fields of action in order to tackle deforestation in our high priority supply chains are:
- Standards and Transparency: Where available, raw materials certified by independent third parties play a key role for retailers to ensure that sustainability requirements are implemented on the ground. In this context, a good option are physical supply chains. In case of limited availability, we acknowledge the impact of credits to minimise deforestation as a first step. In addition, we strive to maximise transparency where possible to increase the impact of our measures.
- Stakeholder dialogue and collaboration: Especially for complex supply chains, collaboration between stakeholders is essential for market transition. We collaborate with:
- Standard bodies to make certification criteria more robust.
- Our supply chain: Direct suppliers and traders.
- Industry groups: Across the sector with organisations such as the Palm Oil Transparency Coalition (POTC), the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), the Retail Soy Group (RSG), among others.
- Capacity building: We engage in the origin of raw materials of our products to create direct impact. Complementing certification and collaboration, we consider supporting projects or landscape approaches, which have the most impact and minimise deforestation.
Support of European legislative framework
We want to go one step further to successfully address systematic challenges throughout complex supply chains. Our longstanding commitment and cooperation with various stakeholders has shown that the best way to minimise deforestation within complex supply chains is through joint initiatives and partnerships. The urgency to create maximum leverage in a timely manner requires all relevant political, economic and social stakeholders to collaborate.
Therefore, the ALDI SOUTH Group supports the introduction of a smart and robust European legislative framework to halt EU-driven deforestation.
Legislative action on deforestation by the European Union is essential to create a level playing field and to drive sector-wide change. It can contribute significantly to the prevention of deforestation and mitigate climate change, and protect the planet’s biodiversity.
In order to prevent deforestation, the palm oil used in our own-brand products is certified according to the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) chain of custody standard. The share of certified palm oil sourced by the ALDI SOUTH Group has increased significantly: from 69% in 2016 to 100% since 2018.
Beyond Certification, the ALDI SOUTH Group is working on transparency and smallholder inclusion in the palm oil sector: We are a founding member of the Palm Oil Transparency Coalition (POTC) and are member of the Retailers' Palm Oil Group (RPOG). In 2016, we developed an approach to better integrate smallholders in our value chain: In addition to being a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) Smallholder Standing Committee and purchasing Independent Smallholder Credits, we also support smallholder farmers on the ground through our smallholder project in Cote d’Ivoire together with our Partner Solidaridad.
The largest share of global soy production is being used as animal feed and therefore transparency and traceability are a challenge due to the complexity of the supply chain. Our aim is to ensure that the cultivation of soy in our supply chains does not harm natural ecosystems, such as forests, or violates human rights. We collaborate with other retailers as part of the Retail Soy Group (RSG) and Soy Transparency Coalition (STC) in order to tackle these challenges, and to increase the availability of sustainable soy feed.
We have calculated our soy footprint from 2017 onwards, which provides a quantitative impact assessment of our supply chains. Since 2018, we have participated in the Collective Soy Reporting (CSR) with a group of European retailers. The CSR quantifies and maps the use of soy on individual company level and analyses the results in a sector-wide manner. According to the CSR, 43.5% of the 2020-soy footprint of ALDI SOUTH Germany, HOFER S/E and ALDI UK/Ireland was deforestation-free (either certified according to an accepted deforestation-free standard or from deforestation-free origins).
Beyond using the insights to move towards a deforestation-free soy supply chain, the CSR results are summarised in the Soy Report, identifying recommendations for the whole sector to move towards deforestation-free soy meal.
Our CR Performance (2020)
- All wood and paper-based components contained in the product packaging of our ALDI own brand core range food and non-food products are to be produced from certified raw materials or recycled materials by the end of 2021.
- The total weight of our ALDI own brand product packaging shall be reduced by 15% in relation to sales by the end of 2025. Suppliers have to ensure that a minimum amount of material is used without compromising the product safety.
- All ALDI own brand product packaging have to be recyclable, compostable or reusable latest by the end of 2025.
- By 2025, we aim to have 30% recycled content in our own brand plastic packaging on average.
Additionally to our international goals highlighted above, some of our national organisations have even more ambitious targets in place.
The implementation of a new IT Infrastructure in some of our European marketplaces led to temporary reporting impediments, which influenced the group-wide performance figure.
COVID-19 led to postponing final production facility audits. As a consequence, the goal on paper-based product packaging has been expanded to the end of 2021.
of products with certified/recycled paper-based product packaging
Palm (Kernel) Oil
Our Goal: All palm (kernel) oil and palm (kernel) oil-based derivatives and fractions used in our own-brand products are certified.
of certified palm (kernel) oil in our own-brand products (since 2018)
We have calculated our soy footprint since 2017 with the aim of providing a quantitative impact assessment of our supply chains. Since 2018, we have participated in the Collective Soy Reporting (CSR) to quantify and map the use of soymeal. The CSR is a supplier survey conducted by an external service provider who reviews the claims of our suppliers.
Soy supply chains are very complex, and the CSR approach helps us to increase transparency each year within our own supply chain and across the European marketplace.
of deforestation-free soy
Our Goal: All relevant wood-based own-brand non-food products are to be produced from recycled or certified raw materials by the end of 2021.
COVID-19 led to postponing final production facility audits. As a consequence, the goal has been expanded to the end of 2021.
of certified/recycled own brand products
Our Projects, Memberships & Working groups
Sustainable Development Goals
Support and respect the protection of human rights
Not complicit in human rights abuses
Uphold freedom of association and recognition of right to collective bargaining
Elimination of forced and compulsory labour
Abolition of child labour
Elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation
Precautionary approach to environmental challenges
Promote environmental responsibility
Development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies