Mars UK’s Wellness at Work program has been voted as the best among the country’s food and drink manufacturers, after it picked up the top prize in the Health and Wellbeing category at the recent Food and Drink Federation (FDF) awards, the leading trade representative of the UK food and drink industry.
The Gold Award was given to Mars in the UK for the work it has done on implementing its wellness strategy across all its UK sites. It was presented to Heather Wood, Paula Frost and Kim Binks of the Occupational Health team, all based in Slough, at a ceremony held in London on October 10th.
The company’s program beat similar schemes from many other UK food and drink manufacturers and retailers. Lee Andrews, UK Chocolate Corporate Affairs Director commented: “After picking up awards over the past 5 years we are delighted that it was again recognised as being ‘leading edge’ by the expert panel – it’s a fantastic achievement by Occupational Health and the HR teams across the UK.”
Judges said that Mars’ scheme had demonstrated a truly holistic view to health and wellbeing, placing equal emphasis on both the physical and mental welfare of its associates. It also noted how a culture of wellness appeared to be genuinely embedded at all levels of the organization.
Dame Carol Black, National Director for Health and Work at the Department for Work and Pensions also praised Mars within the recently published Principles in Action Summary on mars.com, highlighting a new local pilot program where Mars have extended the wellness scheme to small and mediumsized businesses in the Slough area.
"As National Director for Health and Work, I’m delighted with the commitment that Mars has shown to the Health and Work agenda and the excellent results they have achieved at their UK sites,” commented Dame Carol Black.
She added: “Health at work is a vital part of the Public Health agenda and Mars have shown great leadership in this area, having supported this work now for over five years. It is inspiring to see Mars in Slough reaching out into their local community to support smaller businesses in improving the health and wellbeing of their employees – this important project forms part of the UK Government's Responsibility Deal."
Three other Mars programs were also entered at the 2011 FDF awards: the Zero Waste to Landfill scheme; the Eco-Schools Community Project; and the Mars UK Volunteering program.