Sustainability At Marico
Marico believes that it belongs to an interdependent ecosystem comprising Shareholders, Consumers, Associates, Employees, Environment and Society. Sustainable Profitable Growth goes hand in hand with the sustainable progress of the entire ecosystem. The pursuit of profits is not at odds with the pursuit of Purpose: It is the pursuit of a purpose that helps realize the true potential of all participants of the ecosystem. Marico endeavours to be a purpose-focused organization, which achieves sustainable profitable growth by making a difference to the other members of its environment by enabling them to realize their true potential.
Our comprehensive stakeholder engagement program facilitates a good understanding of the company’s key thrust areas from stakeholders’ perspective. We constantly evaluate the sustainability considerations across our product life cycle and strive to reduce Green House Gas emissions, improve energy efficiency, adopt sustainable procurement practices and employ renewable energy sources while reducing waste generation in our operations.
We have formalised focus areas under the themes of Climate Change, Resource Optimisation and Corporate Citizenship. At present, we are implementing projects in the realm of energy efficiency, renewable energy, water positivity, recycling & reuse of materials, sustainable procurement, societal wellbeing, skill development & employability, education of underprivileged children and creating sustainability awareness. A tracking mechanism for sustainability performance is developed and review system is being established. The FY 16-17 measurements will be used for setting up long term Sustainability Goals at Marico.
Sustainable supply assurance is at the heart of Marico's Procurement Excellence Framework. As a part of our business initiatives, we have been able to forge strong and long-lasting relationships with farmers under the "Farmer First" program.
- Coconut cultivation
- Package of Practices: Marico has set up a team to understand the best practices for Coconut farming through learning programs with universities & on-field experiments. The information collected is converted into a Package of practice manual which is circulated to farmers. Exclusive training programs are designed for the farmers accordingly.
- Trained 3000 farmers with total area of 6000 acres
- Distributed around 2,200 hybrid coconut saplings to the coconut farmers (free of cost) in Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala so that farmers can experience the high productivity of hybrids.
- Impact: 120 farmers spread across 368 Acres of land have adopted the suggested practices with regular monitoring & guidance of Marico personnel. Early adopters who started in August 15 have shown 20% cumulative productivity increase in the months Jan-Apr.
- Partnering with Govt.: Marico is working with the Government of Kerala as part of their Keragramam Project initiative in Kavannur Panchayath, Malappuram. We have partnered with the agricultural departments in the state for training farmers and setting up 12 model farms across Kerala. These Model Farms aim to educate and demonstrate benefits of scientific farming and pest management practices.
- Collaboration with Coconut board of India: Marico’s Copra collection centre in Malappuram district partnered actively with the Coconut Development Board for rollout & execution of the CPS (Coconut Producer’s Society) program. As a part of the program, the collection centre will be leveraging its reach to the farmers to form clusters in order to avail benefits from the Govt. of India. This initiative has brought about a transformation in the lives of coconut farmers in that area. Overall, 110 clusters were formed from 07-08 to 13-14 and 121 CPS were formed in 14-15 to 15-16. These efforts influenced the lives of 7,700 farmers covering more than 6,700 acres.
- Safflower productivity development
Marico has been instrumental in developing Safflower production as well as productivity in India. Multiple initiatives have been undertaken in past 10 years to arrest decline of crop and develop Safflower as a profitable option for Rabi season. We are making efforts towards bringing in new technological solutions to farmers and improve productivity of Safflower in farmers’ fields.
Agri-extension program has touched upon 5 states, 40+ districts, 3200+ safflower growing villages and 63000+ farmers over the past few years.
Key initiatives –
- Seed Multiplication Program
Quality of seed is the most important controllable variable for improving yields of Safflower crop. Safflower crop, by virtue of being a minor crop, has not attracted investment or interest from many private/public seed companies. Marico works with private seed companies by contributing money and human resources in production, grading and sale of quality seeds to safflower farmers. As a result of this intervention, we have been able to improve seed replacement rate to 31% from 0.07%. The higher seed replacement has resulted in 2% increase in oil content from 29.5% in 11-12 to 30.15% in 15-16. Since, oil remains the major input for which all oilseeds are grown, any increase in oil% leads to increase in incomes of the farmers.
- Pre-Sowing Training Classes (PSTC)
Marico team regularly conducts PSTC classes wherein we disseminate information on the best practices of growing Safflower, relevant to the area where farmers operate. Select influential and progressive farmers are shortlisted for the classes to help popularise these practices among other farmers in the area.
- PPP Programs with Government of Maharashtra.
Public-Private partnership programs with state agriculture departments are undertaken in order to help government drive agenda of welfare and income maximisation of farmers. Depending on the program, Marico pledges either free inputs in the form of effective seeds or gives a buying guarantee to the participating farmers.
- Experiment/Demonstration Plots & Field days
Marico regularly organises experiment/demonstration plots to showcase the effectiveness of new technology to farmers in adjoining areas. These plots help us in screening any new technology on the basis of their on-field results. Marico’s agri-extension team recommends new practice to farmers only if it works in our experiment plots.
For instance, this year we did experiment plots with Biostat (a soil amendment technique). Application of this technique increases yield by improving the capacity of soil to retain nutrients. We were able to observe yield increase to the tune of 66% on aggregate levels.
Optimising the resource consumption and improving operational efficiency has always been a priority for all our manufacturing locations. Most of our manufacturing locations are certified as per ISO:14001 Environment Management System. Our largest manufacturing plant in Baddi has been certified as per ISO: 50001 Energy Management System.
Marico has won several awards in Green manufacturing such as CII water conservation award, CII energy conservation award, Greentech environment excellence award, National energy conservation award, CII excellence in Energy management award in past years.
- Energy efficiency: Energy efficiency improvements were carried out across all units to reduce overall energy (thermal as well as electrical) consumption. Electricity reduction initiatives saved overall 900000+ units in FY 15-16 equivalent to 5.8% improvement over FY 14-15. Waste heat recovery is done to reduce fuel requirement.
- Renewable energy: Recognising that fuel consumption for generating process heat causes the maximum energy demand we have increased the use of biomass in our boilers at all facilities. As a result Green House Gas emissions are also reduced to a great extent.
Marico has started using wind energy for its units and business associates in southern cluster which will provide 20 L units of renewable energy per annum worth of reducing Green House Gas emissions by 1000 tCO2 (Tons of Carbon dioxide) approximately.
- Green House Gas emissions intensity: Continuous efforts are taken to reduce the Green House Gas emissions arising out of own operation as well as helping business associates by improving their operational efficiencies.
- Waste elimination and yield improvement: Process and packaging design improvements in India as well international locations have benefited in reduction of packing material. Overall 08 projects were completed in last 2 years for design optimization which had helped in saving packing material worth of 260 MT (Metric Ton).
- Efficiency improvement at business associates: A focussed effort in improving operational efficiencies of our business associates resulted in material movement reduction which is equivalent of 13 tCO2 annually. Initiatives like usage of multi-cavity moulds, high speed printing, combing of operations were key contributors.
Our corporate office in Mumbai is a Green Building certified by USGBC (LEED Certification for Commercial Interiors). In order to achieve this certification we have taken up several energy and water conservation projects and have demonstrated efficient use of resources. We have recently completed an important project on “Reduction of Illumination energy reduction” as a result of which, it is expected that we will be able to better our credentials and achieve further reductions in energy consumption. We have also rolled out projects for water free Urinals and recycling of waste water which has brought down fresh water demand considerably. The LEED Certification given by USGBC is a testimonial to the efforts taken in this direction.
- Marico Innovation foundation
Marico Innovation Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation working towards the cause of innovation since 2003. The Foundation creates impact through its four core programs:
- MIF Scale-up program works closely with innovative social organizations which are driven to achieve large scale impact. Our network of domain experts, CXOs, B-Schools and like-minded corporates consult organizations on their scale-up. We diagnose the challenges, implement prototype solutions and integrate successful solutions into the business offering of the organization.
- MIF Innovation Awards celebrate the most breakthrough Indian innovations that hold the potential to have a large scale impact. 49 breakthrough innovations have been recognized over the last 12 years.
- India Innovates: A video series that showcases some of the most amazing innovations of India that are truly transforming lives, communities, businesses and more
- hack2incubate: A platform created and designed to inspire innovations and incubate them into successful businesses
- Education for all
Marico launched programmes called “Chotte Kadam Pragati Ke Aur” (Small Steps to progress), “Going to school” to support the education of underprivileged children under the age group of 6 – 18 years in India. Under this programme, projects were undertaken with a prime focus of mobilisation and retention of children in the schools. Last year, education strategy was built on three core pillars to a drive combined brand and social impact:
Over 200000 children benefited in programs put together.
- Bringing children back to school and preventing dropouts
- Improving in-class learning for children
- Equipping children with life skillss
- Saffola World Heart Day
Saffola’s vision is to create a Heart Healthy India! Through its not for profit initiative Saffolalife, it is on a mission to make people realise the need & importance of heart health by educating them on early markers of heart health & enable them to start on this journey in a manner that is simple, effective yet measurable.
Over the years, Saffola has reached out to millions across the country via large scale mass media awareness programs, helped over 200,000 people over 90 cities with diagnostic check-ups, dietician services, ‘Heart Age Finder’ tool.
In 2014, Saffola undertook the task of driving awareness of Women’s heart health since there was an existing myth that Women were protected from heart diseases- this issue continues to be largely unknown & unaddressed. In 2015, the brand stayed committed to the cause of Women’s Heart Health through its campaign “Protect her Heart”. Saffolalife launched one of its kind– Heart Fitness Test that helps people assess their Heart Health basis their Fitness Parameters. Over 46,000 Heart Fitness Tests taken till date.
- Nihar Shanti Amla Mobile Pathshala (Mobile School)
The Mobile Pathshala program was designed to aid to schooling in deep rural pockets especially for 4-8 year old children. It was based on principals like “Teach by Principles rather than linear directions”, “Mnemonic devices aid retention” and “Paint a picture with words”. Overall, 15.82 Lac user registered till date.
As part of our continued efforts to create a positive lasting impact on the society, Marico Bangladesh formed a partnership with Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM) to bring the light of education to underprivileged communities. Through this partnership, free access to quality education is being provided to out-of-school children who unfortunately had to drop out of mainstream schooling due to life’s hardships.
The partnership has so far provided education to 3,000 out of school children in the Melandah Upazila of Jamalpur district, which has historically suffered from very low literacy rate. The team has established and today operates 75 Children Learning Centers comprising 75 teachers selected and trained exclusively.
Based on the unique model of community mobilization, multi-grade teaching- the project is witnessing great participation from teachers, parents and the community at large. While the parents are applauding this initiative, teachers are enjoying working at CLCs, students are making most of the learning experience.
Marico South Africa launched the HERCULES Hygiene and First Aid Awareness Campaign in 2015. HERCULES reached out to 50 schools in 2 townships within major metropolitan areas. The primary objective was not only to create brand awareness, promoting early engagement with the brand but to also educate and empower school learners in previously disadvantaged communities on health and wellbeing. It was a huge opportunity for Marico South Africa to give back to the community by supplying these schools with much-needed materials and supplies such as educational posters, leaflets, frisbees and water bottles (to encourage a healthy lifestyle). A significant contribution to these schools was the donation and installation of a fully stocked, metal branded first aid kit, which was placed in strategic areas within the premises (i.e the sick room, office area and sports areas).
The campaign was a success resulting in HERCULES interacting with over 32,000 learners (plus the teachers and parents) over the set period.