KitKat, one of New Zealand’s most popular chocolate brands, has today pledged to become carbon neutral by 2025.
The pledge will see KitKat globally aiming to reduce emissions generated through ingredient sourcing, manufacturing and distribution by more than 50%.
As most emissions occur when producing KitKat’s ingredients like cocoa and milk, the brand’s efforts to restore forests and support a transition to regenerative agriculture will aim to reduce these emissions as much as possible.
KitKat will invest in high quality offsetting based on natural climate solutions for any emissions that cannot be eliminated.
KitKat is working with global climate change and sustainability consultancy The Carbon Trust to measure the brand’s current carbon footprint. This process will be completed later this year.
Protecting and restoring forests
Deforestation is one of the main global drivers of carbon emissions in the agricultural supply chain. Nestlé has used a variety of tools over the last ten years, including ingredient certification, supply chain mapping and satellite imagery to achieve its no-deforestation commitment.
Nestlé is also focusing on forest conservation and restoration, including working to help protect and restore forests in its cocoa supply chain as outlined in its 2019 action plan.
Earlier this month, Nestlé joined forces with others to launch the Rimba Collective. an initiative which supports protecting and restoring over 500,000 hectares of tropical forest landscapes in Southeast Asia where the company sources its ingredients.
Expanding regenerative agriculture
KitKat will expand its work with cocoa, palm oil, cereals, sugar and dairy farmers to implement regenerative practices. Farming methods such as reducing synthetic inputs, better management of soils and tree planting can help draw down carbon from the atmosphere, enhance biodiversity and boost on-farm productivity. To support this, KitKat will help farmers plant five million shade trees where it sources its cocoa by 2025.
Accelerating the transition to renewable electricity
KitKat is working to improve the environmental footprint of its factories. It has already reduced the energy required to produce KitKat by more than 40% per tonne of product since 2000.
Nestlé is using renewable electricity at an increasing number of manufacturing sites and will use 100% renewable electricity at all KitKat factories before the end of 2025.
Building on more than a decade of action
KitKat has a history of improving the sustainability of its supply chain that dates back more than a decade. In 2009, Nestlé launched the Nestlé Cocoa Plan, sourcing 100% of the cocoa used for KitKat in NZ in 2013, and 100% of the cocoa used for KitKat globally by since 2016. Nestlé has planted more than 15 million cocoa trees and invested more than $450 million NZD in cocoa sustainability as part of this work.
The new KitKat carbon neutral pledge complements the company’s ongoing efforts to reduce its environmental footprint further.
Nestlé is committed to reaching net zero emissions everywhere by no later than 2050 throughout its value chain.