In celebration of World Environment Day on June 5, Conagra Brands recently announced the winners of its annual Sustainable Development Awards, an employee-led program that encourages the development and implementation of innovative ideas related to sustainable production and business practices.
This year, employees from across the organization submitted more than 200 sustainability-focused projects that conserve water, reduce waste and save energy.
The winner for water conservation came from Conagra's Macon team. They saved 9.9 million gallons of water through monitoring, awareness and daily management practices, such as optimizing the water pressure in an automated sanitation system, impacting 9% of total facility water use.
Now in its 12th consecutive year, the 2021 Sustainable Development Awards projects have conserved 64 million gallons of water, equivalent to eliminating the filling of 97 Olympic-size swimming pools.
Other savings from awards projects include:
- Decreased the company's carbon footprint by 90,100 metric tons, equivalent to avoiding the greenhouse gas emissions of driving a vehicle 226 million miles
- Reduced waste by 12,300 tons, equivalent to saving the weight of 54 Statues of Liberty
- Minimized material use by 17.6 million pounds, equivalent to saving the weight of 39 Statues of Liberty
Sustainability initiatives are submitted by cross-functional employee project teams across seven categories: Sustainable Brands, Waste Reduction and Recycling, Water Conservation, Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Operations, and an overall Award of Excellence and People's Choice Award. All submissions are judged by a panel of company sustainability leaders and winners are selected by employee peers.
"Conagra's Sustainable Development Awards recognize our employees' creative solutions in building sustainable production and business practices," said Sean Connolly, president and chief executive officer, Conagra Brands. "These projects reflect our employees' dedication to nourishing people, the planet and communities by meeting environmental challenges head-on. Congratulations to all of the teams who displayed innovative thinking, executed with excellence, and submitted projects for this year's awards."