Sustainable Paper-Based Packaging
Goal: Purchase paper-based packaging with fiber from responsibly managed forests and recycled sources.
Progress: In Progress
Given the large volume of packaging we buy, Yum! is uniquely positioned to provide environmentally preferable packaging to our customers around the globe while also reducing our impact on the environment and our communities. Our ability to serve food safely, quickly and conveniently is largely dependent upon our use of disposable packaging.
Throughout the quick service restaurant industry, the way in which we package food has been consistent with the standardized packaging available. Understanding and addressing our packaging impact on the environment and working closely with our suppliers is vital for the long-term sustainability of our business.
Yum! is committed to making sustainable packaging a priority. In support of this commitment, we have developed the following Sustainable Sourcing and Waste Recovery Principles:
- Yum! is moving toward Sustainable Sourcing by ensuring that the paper and paper-based packaging products we buy do not knowingly come from illegal or other unwanted fiber sources.
- We will give preference to suppliers who source wood fiber, certified by a third-party, which meets the most rigorous forest management standards. Currently the Forest Stewardship Council standard is considered the most rigorous standard by leading conservation organizations. We will also source paper and packaging from other national certification systems that are endorsed by the Program for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), such as the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), provided the fiber avoids the unwanted sources listed above.
- Yum! is committed to Sustainable Packaging by increasing the amount of recycled content, as permitted by regulatory and technical constraints, across our global system. This will be done within packaging content regulations to ensure food safety, as well as within performance criteria to retain functionality. Though limited availability of suitable recycled fiber restricts our access to the supply of these materials in some geographical areas, we will work to leverage sustainable practices into all of our wrappers, napkins, and containers worldwide.
Over a 6-month period in 2013, Yum! surveyed our global suppliers and gathered data on all paper-based packaging sourcing to assess our current state. The survey asked questions about recycled and certified fiber content, country of forest fiber origin, environmental management systems, and several other parameters.
This survey allowed us to better evaluate our paper packaging supply base against our responsible paper sourcing policy. Through this process, we gained a better understanding of the forest sources of our fiber. We identified higher risk sources and are taking action in specific regions to avoid and phase out unwanted sources. We also identified opportunities to accelerate our progress toward more recycled or certified fiber sources.
As a result of having this more robust baseline data, we are collaborating with outside experts to further refine our procurement policy, to strengthen our internal procedures for bringing on board new suppliers and engaging with current suppliers, and developing public targets and reporting systems to achieve these goals.