Bimbo pushes forward on better environmental practices

by Eric Schroeder
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Rosalío Rodríguez, vice-president of sustainability at Grupo Bimbo, said the company is striving to become a global model in environmental sustainability.

MEXICO CITY — Grupo Bimbo S.A.B. de C.V. continues to make progress with “Sembrando Juntos,” its social responsibility program focused on achieving efficient use of energy, water, waste management and sustainable purchases.

“At Grupo Bimbo we are sensitive about the environmental challenges, therefore we constantly are seeking to incorporate innovative practices and strengthen the ones that are already implemented, in order to contribute in the reduction of the environmental footprint,” said Rosalío Rodríguez, vice-president of sustainability at Grupo Bimbo.

As part of its effort to reduce its water footprint, Grupo Bimbo is focused on best practices, including the implementation of water-saving, capture and reuse of rainwater devices, as well as centers for residual water treatment in all of its facilities. In 2014, such practices helped the company generate savings of 135 million liters in water consumption in its operations worldwide.

In the area of climate change and carbon footprint, Bimbo said it has adopted a strategy to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions (CO2). The company’s initiatives include its first ecological sales depot, which is supplied by wind power and has a fleet of electric vehicles that operate in downtown Mexico City. Also, located in Mexico is the Piedra Larga wind farm, the largest in the world built specifically for a food company. The wind farm supplies electricity to the majority of Bimbo’s facilities in the world, helping the company achieve a reduction of 139 tons of CO2 emissions to the atmosphere during 2014.

Bimbo's Piedra Larga wind farm is the largest in the world built specifically for a food company.

Bimbo said it has improved its fleet by installing speed controllers, which has helped improve the performance of the fuel of its units and reduce the CO2 emissions.

Zero deforestation is another goal Bimbo has set out to achieve. To accomplish this, the company said it has implemented sustainability criteria in the purchasing of supplies along its value chain, and is working with different projects and organizations. For example, the company said it has worked for more than 13 years with Reforestamos Mexico, a civil association that works to ensure the forests that the country needs for its future development.

To achieve an integrated optimal waste management program, Bimbo has made strides in finding other uses for its waste besides sending it to landfills. In 2014, 16 of the company’s production plants in the United States and United Kingdom achieved the goal of zero waste sent to landfills. Rotherham and Maidstone plants in the United Kingdom were recognized with the “Gold Zero Waste Award” for their efforts in this matter. Additionally, an important achievement in waste reduction was achieved in Spain, as well as the recycling of 100% of the waste generated in its production plants.

During 2014, the company strengthened its natural capital initiative, through which it seeks to convey its best practices in sustainability throughout the value chain.

“We have worked for more than two decades under an environmental policy which evolved with the group’s growth,” Mr. Rodriguez said. “This year we updated and revitalized the program with actions focused under each of the lines in which we operate, to push forward the tracking of better environmental practices and promote a culture of sustainability in society.”
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READER COMMENTS (1)

By kat 6/6/2015 7:13:21 PM
If only they'd care about their "associates" as much as they do about the environment. Hypocrites.