Last month global brewer, Molson Coors Brewing Company were listed along with another 10 food and drink companies in this year’s Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI) and was appointed Beverage Sector Leader.  A significant achievement in a “competition” that has similarities to the Independent Achievers Academy, but on a much bigger scale. Both ask their entrants to take a significant look at how they operate their businesses’.

I asked Molson Coors’ Global Sustainability Manager, Julia Denham how they achieved this award. Her role focuses on understanding the company’s sustainability risks and finding new opportunities in Molson Coors’ supply chain especially in water and agriculture. She said the DJSI endeavours to reflect how large stock market listed companies are managing future risk and exploiting opportunities. There are three main categories, economic, environmental and social. Companies are challenged and measured across these areas in significant detail. The economic category includes amongst others, brand, customer and supply chain management. Environment covers environmental management and policy, eco-efficiency, water risk and raw materials. Social covers areas such as human resources, health & safety and alcohol responsibility.
This is an in depth annual review that enables the organisation’s top management to look at the risks their company faces, mitigation plans and opportunities. It’s a harsh, under the microscope process that allows these companies to compare themselves with industry benchmarks and challenge their perceptions.

Recognising that sustainability can be portrayed as a complex and somewhat academic subject, Molson Coors has produced a simplified approach to communicate to and engage its employees, called Our Beer Print. Julia explained ‘as a company we want everyone to be active in reducing our negative impacts, such as carbon emissions, and increasing our positive impact, such as working with our suppliers and communities. To achieve this everyone in the company, from CEO to brewery sites across the globe, is challenged to commit to three little thing to improve Our Beer Print’. Molson Coors is looking for positive change from the smallest things like the unnecessary use of lights and paper to managing the raw materials of beer like water and barley. Everyone can have an input.

Julia goes on ‘We are also keen to share this work, we have a website that endeavours to explain our journey and we are already including an Our Beer Print commitment panel on our UK packaging. We are keen to engage our consumers and have had a lot of success with this in Canada where we are already using similar labels to increase our consumers awareness of responsible drinking, recycling and their impact on the environment’. Wider than this Molson Canadian Red Leaf Project website is an indication of the commitment that the company has to engaging its customers and improving communities.’

Our Beer Print is helping Molson Coors to measure and achieve success in the areas they are targeting and their listing on the World DJSI and beverage sector lead shows that lots of little things really do add up to the bigger picture.

How do you benchmark and measure your business?