Unilever ANZ becomes certified B Corporation

The assessment process reviewed Unilever’s entire operations in Australia & New Zealand.

Unilever Australia & New Zealand (ANZ) has announced it is joining the B Corporation (B Corp) community, a growing network of organisations who are committed to meeting high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability.

Unilever ANZ joins a growing list of more than 460 businesses to achieve the certification in the Australasian region, and more than 5400 globally.

The assessment process reviewed Unilever’s entire operations in Australia & New Zealand.

The certification is independently administered by B Lab and awarded to companies that demonstrate verifiable positive impact through policies and practices across five areas – governance, workers, communities, customers, and the environment.

The actions Unilever ANZ is taking under The Compass – its global sustainable business strategy – were integral to its successful Certification.

This includes fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce with gender parity across management; pioneering flexible work with a four-day work week trial in New Zealand; reimagining packaging to reduce plastic waste; collaborating with farmers on Regenerative Agricultural Principles; and driving strong employee engagement around Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG).

Cameron Heath, managing director Unilever New Zealand, said the B Corp Certification is a tremendous milestone for the company, against a backdrop of consumers expecting more transparency and accountability from corporate organisations’ sustainability commitments.

“On any given day, thousands of Kiwi households choose our products – a privilege we don’t take for granted. Achieving B Corp Certification gives our consumers, as well as our partners and our employees confidence in our commitment to have a positive impact on people and the planet, now and into the future.

“Our purpose is to make sustainable living commonplace, and our B Corp Certification is both a validation of the actions we’ve implemented to realise this purpose, and a motivator to strive even further.”

Andrew Davies, CEO of B Lab Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand, said Unilever’s certification sends a powerful signal that will further advance change in the consumer goods sector, and our broader global economic system.

“We need more businesses of all sizes to step up and be accountable, and B Corp Certification is a powerful way to do that. It comes with a significant burden of greater transparency and requires continuous improvement to maintain the Certification over time. It’s a credit to the team at Unilever ANZ that they have been willing and able to achieve this with such a large, complex business.’

The B Corp Certification requires ongoing disclosure for Unilever ANZ to maintain its credentials. As part of the Certification process, the business was required to make a legal commitment by changing their corporate governance approach to be accountable to all stakeholders. Certified businesses must also exhibit transparency by allowing information about their performance measured against B Lab’s standards to be publicly available on their B Corp profile on B Lab’s website.

“B Corp is not a ‘set and forget’ certification,” said Heath.

“While we already hold ourselves accountable to our own global Compass targets, achieving Certification adds an extra layer of accountability and encourages us to be even more transparent.”

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