Our Priorities › Responsible Business Conduct

Current business practice is already showing that Responsible Business Conduct is an increasingly important driver for companies’ competitiveness, by bringing benefits in terms of risk management, cost savings, access to capital, customer relationships, human resource management, and innovation capacity. It is FoodDrinkEurope’s and its members’ strong conviction that RBC will help Europe deliver its Europe 2020 strategy, encouraging smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in crucial areas such as employment, innovation and poverty reduction. RBC will also play a role in delivering the EU’s renewed industrial strategy and initiatives moving towards a circular economy and green employment initiative.

FoodDrinkEurope's Contributions and Commitments 

It is FoodDrinkEurope’s and its members’ strong conviction that CSR will help the EU deliver its Europe 2020 strategy, encouraging smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in crucial areas such as employment, innovation and poverty reduction. CSR will also play
a role in delivering the EU’s renewed industrial strategy and initiatives, moving towards a circular economy and green employment initiative.

Considering the above-described EU CSR policy developments, FoodDrinkEurope is pleased to share its vision on CSR, the contribution it wishes to make, and the guiding principles for doing so, as summarised in the statement: ‘Integrating Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) into everyday business

The mission of FoodDrinkEurope, the organisation representing the interests of Europe’s food and drink industry, is to promote and facilitate the development of an environment in which all European food and drink companies, whatever their size, can meet society’s needs and consumer requirements, while moving towards sustainable growth.

In achieving this mission, FoodDrinkEurope strives to contribute to the development of an appropriate framework in which issues such as competitiveness, affordability of quality food, consumer trust in food safety and quality, informed consumer choice, responsible marketing and the environment, are dealt with in a holistic manner, underpinned by sound science, robust data management and effective communication.

Europe’s food and drink industry believes that CSR plays a key guiding role in achieving its mission. CSR improves our capacity to manage and reduce negative social and environmental impacts within organisations and in our value chains and to develop employment opportunities, while at the same time bringing benefits
to our consumers.

In addition, CSR helps to build long-term employee, consumer and citizens’ trust. CSR can also bring important cost savings, access to capital, and resource management capacity. For us, CSR is about taking actions beyond our legal obligations towards society and its environment, and providing the basis for a sustainable business model fostering innovation and growth within our sector.

In delivering its mission, FoodDrinkEurope’s members are committed to continuing the journey they have already started to help deliver on the triple bottom line; people, planet and profit. This involves further promoting and participating in both company and multi-stakeholder CSR initiatives, global principles and guidelines, and most importantly, integrating these into their business strategy and daily operations and also in their value chains.

FoodDrinkEurope further agrees that internationally recognised principles and guidelines provide a key reference for organisations seeking a formal approach to CSR. These principles and guidelines include the OECD guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (MNE), the United Nations (UN) Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the 10 principles of the United Nations (UN) Global Compact, the ISO 26000 Guidance Standard on Social Responsibility and the ILO Tri-partite Declaration of Principles Concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy.

In order to deliver and move forward on the CSR agenda, FoodDrinkEurope believes that it is crucial to work in partnerships, along the food supply chain and with relevant stakeholders4.This commitment is consistent with the sector’s longstanding and active participation in the Commission’s High Level Forum for a better functioning food supply chain established in 20105, and with its prominent role in establishing and driving results in the Roundtable on Sustainable Production and Consumption, amongst others.

In line with this, and as part of its commitment to CSR, FoodDrinkEurope strongly encourages its members to not only raise awareness on CSR among their employees, agents, subcontractors, and suppliers but also to urge them to respect the guiding principles we have identified for the sector.


Based on the above considerations, FoodDrinkEurope has identified a number of specific guiding principles for a variety of key CSR areas. Through these, FoodDrinkEurope aims to promote its commitment to implementing CSR in the food and drink sector.
 
We, the members of FoodDrinkEurope, are committed to be guided in our business models by the principles of: Human Rights, Health &Safety at Work, Society, Environment, Consumers, and Responsible Business Conduct. Using these principles as a basis, we will further raise awareness of sharing and scaling up best practices that will be beneficial for both large organisations and SMEs.


Download the CSR Brochure