Japan snack giant Calbee Snack intensifies palm oil and electricity sustainability efforts

By Guan Yu Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Snack manufacturer Calbee intensifies sustainability efforts as part of Vision 2030 ©CalbeeAnnualReport2019
Snack manufacturer Calbee intensifies sustainability efforts as part of Vision 2030 ©CalbeeAnnualReport2019

Related tags Japan Calbee Palm oil Sustainability

Japanese snack firm Calbee is intensifying its sustainability activities by working on the sustainable procurement of palm oil and attempting to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 30%.

This is part of its long-term vision (Vision 2030), which the company announced in its annual report.

Calbee holds a 54.7% stake in the Japanese domestic snack market in 2019, with products such as potato, flour, corn-based snacks as well as cereals.

According to the annual report, Calbee’s overseas business was valued at JPY 40.5 billion (USD 370 million) in 2019, with strong growth reported in markets including China, North America, UK, Indonesia and South Korea.

Palm oil

Earlier this year, Calbee joined the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) to promote and ensure the sustainable production and use of palm oil, in a bid to minimise the environmental impact of palm oil cultivation.

Palm oil is used as a raw material for many products from margarine, snacks, to soaps. and production is notorious for being the largest cause of deforestation in Indonesia and other tropical countries.

Satoshi Yoshida, manager of the public relations department at Calbee told FoodNavigator-Asia,​ a majority of the company’s snack and cereal products contain palm oil.

Our company primarily uses palm oil in the frying process during production​.”

The company is working on procuring RSPO certified palm oil, “Calbee is maintaining close relationship with suppliers who have sound procurement sources of palm oil with socially responsible and environmentally friendly footprints​.”

The RSPO is currently made up of more than 4,000 members globally in manufacturing, retail, environmental organisations.

Greenhouse gas emissions

The company also hopes to reduce 30% of total greenhouse gas emissions across its businesses by 2030.

It has converted to renewable energy in two of its production factories in the Ibaraki Prefecture (Shimotsuma Factory and Furukawa Factory), and will continue to focus on biomass and solar sources.

Yoshida stressed that “Switching to renewable energy does not necessarily mean reduction of electricity use itself unless the company accelerates self-consumption models of generated renewable energy​.”

Other sustainable efforts

The company also hopes to reduce food loss by 20% across its supply chain.

From June it will extend the expiration date of its potato chips, and switch from a specific day of expiration, to a month and year model.

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