The Kraft Heinz Company sustainably sourced 75% of its tomatoes for Heinz ketchup last year, building on the condiment maker’s broader environmental goals, according to a Monday report.
Audits verified that three-quarters of the supply came from growers that produce tomatoes in accordance with the company's Sustainable Agricultural Practices Manual. This is an improvement from earlier in 2022, when the company found that 56% of its tomatoes were produced sustainably.
“We will continue to roll out audits and verification to ensure supplier compliance with these standards,” Kraft Heinz said in the report.
The CPG giant said it's well on its way to meet its goal of sustainably sourcing 100% of its tomatoes by 2025. The company has plans to expand the scope of its sustainable agriculture program to include navy beans and other crops.
Kraft's supplier manual, released in 2021, was benchmarked against a leading third-party sustainability platform and has grower requirements for soil, water, pest and disease management. Kraft Heinz established its 100% ketchup tomato goal in 2020.
The company also has its own breeding program called HeinzSeed, and says that tomatoes grown from its seeds are more disease resistant and need less water and land to produce.
In addition to crops, the food and beverage company has made progress in animal welfare, packaging, and waste reduction, according to its 2023 Environmental Social Governance Report.
Kraft Heinz sourced 67% of its eggs globally from “cage-free or better” hens last year, with plans to reach 100% by 2025. It also is committed to improving broiler chicken welfare practices among U.S. and European suppliers in the coming years.
However, the company's scope 3 emissions — which would include agricultural operations — only slightly decreased from 2021 and was more than 2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent above 2020 levels.
“We recognize we have a long way to go but innovative partnerships … will help position us to continue advancing toward our goals and propelling the industry forward,” Rashida La Lande, executive vice president, global general counsel, and chief sustainability and corporate affairs officer at Kraft Heinz, said in a statement.