General Mills: Reducing GHG emissions & achieving net zero

General Mills has shared advanced new climate plans, spanning DEI commitments, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and net zero goals, to name a few

Founded on the banks of the Mississippi River at Saint Anthony Falls in Minneapolis, General Mills supplies sustainably-sourced foods and is committed to creating a better world for people, the planet and food.

For over 150 years, General Mills has believed in putting people first by improving food security and advancing a culture of inclusion, equity and belonging. It has therefore made strides towards becoming sustainable, with its latest Global Responsibility Report stating how the business is Standing for Good – a core pillar of its Accelerate strategy, marking the company’s 53rd year of transparent reporting. 

“For more than 150 years, General Mills has been guided by the belief that doing good and good business are not mutually exclusive. We’ve proven year-over-year, including throughout an unprecedented global pandemic, that they go hand-in-hand,” said Jeff Harmening, chairman and CEO of General Mills. “We are more committed than ever to ensuring the G in General Mills stands for Good, and our focus on people and planet remains central to how we operate.” 

General Mills’s strategic commitments to the planet

Building on its ongoing plans to drive progress towards its sustainability goals, General Mills has developed a climate plan to focus on key climate levers, such as regenerative agriculture, dairy, deforestation, renewable electricity, and transportation efficiency. What’s more, the business is set on reducing GHG emissions across its value chain by 30% by 2030, while also achieving net zero emissions by 2050. 

“A healthy planet is critical for General Mills to continue making food the world loves, and climate change is putting our ability to do so at risk,” said Mary Jane Melendez, Chief Sustainability and Global Impact Officer, at General Mills. “While we have more work to do, we’ve made tremendous progress to better understand our environmental impacts and how we can most effectively reduce them across our full value chain.”

Improving DEI in the business

General Mills has also made a number of commitments to support its employees and strengthen communities. For example, to improve racial equity, the business has increased the representation of people of colour in officer positions to 29% and professional roles to 21%. Additionally, people of colour represent 33% of its Board of Directors. 

There has also been a focus on increasing the number of women in the workforce, with a representation of 50% consistently over the last three years.

“A diverse workforce is important for our business and central to our core value of championing belonging,” said Jacqueline Williams-Roll, Chief Human Resources Officer at General Mills. “Meaningful change takes time, and we remain committed to advancing racial equity both within our walls and in our communities. Our Employee Networks, Courageous Conversation internal speaker series, and community partnerships are just a few of the ways we’re fostering inclusion at General Mills.”

Using food to create a positive environment impact

As food is General Mills’ primary focus, the business sets out to ensure its brands reach the highest standards. To do so, the business has expanded its natural and organic products sharing that 1 in 9 products within the company’s North American portfolio is either certified organic or made with organic ingredients. 

What’s more, General Mills invests in new products to meet the ever-evolving consumer preferences, such as plant-based brands, to ensure it caters to a wider demographic.


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