Mars Makes Commitment to Support UN Sustainable Development Goal 14, Life Below Water
- Scientists recommend that urgent and wide-ranging action is needed if we are to prevent the ecological collapse of our oceans.
- The company’s commitments towards SDG 14 include sustainable fish sourcing, working towards a circular economy, reducing its carbon footprint and to restore and regenerate the oceans most critical threatened ecosystems.
Brussels, Belgium (June 8, 2021) — Today, on World Oceans Day, Mars announces adoption of UN Sustainable Development Goal 14, Life Below Water, as part of the Business Avengers.
Business Avengers is an ongoing initiative which brings together some of the largest and most influential global corporations — including Google, Salesforce and Diageo — to drive awareness of the Global Goals. The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. They are an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing — in a global partnership. The Business Avengers are a group of corporations which represent almost a million employees and more than USD $500 billion revenue between them. In supporting the Business Avengers initiative, Mars commits to using its reach and influence to increase awareness and drive action towards SDG No. 14 and encouraging its peers to do the same.
Climate change, overexploitation, destructive fishing practices and marine pollution have impacted ocean health significantly. Scientists estimate that, if we do nothing, 90% of the world’s tropical reefs will be gone by 2043, and that urgent action is needed to protect vulnerable fish ecosystems, tackle plastic waste in oceans and address climate change.
In delivering the Mars Sustainable in a Generation Plan, Mars is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions across its full value chain by 27% by 2025 and 67% by 2050 from 2015 levels, while also achieving net-zero emissions from direct operations by 2040 and is working toward a circular economy in which no packaging goes to waste. In addition, Mars is aiming for 100% sustainably sourced fish aligned to its guidelines, and investing in the world’s largest coral reef restoration project in locations which sciences tell us will likely be the last to be impacted by climate change aiming to give corals the most time to adapt and society to reverse the adverse climate trend.
Mars Petcare is leading two key initiatives focused on oceans health, in collaboration with expert partners. In 2010, in partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Mars Petcare set an ambitious target to seek 100% sustainable sources of fish. Progress toward the goal is highlighted in a new joint report from WWF and Mars Petcare detailing work over the past decade to innovate and scale approaches to more sustainable fish sourcing. The company now sources 81% of fish used from more sustainable sources aligned to Mars’ guidelines, and sources no endangered fish species1. WWF and Mars Petcare have renewed their global partnership until 2025.
SHEBA®, a Mars Petcare brand, is undertaking the world's largest coral restoration programme in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy, aiming to restore coral reefs measuring more than 185,000 square meters by 2029. This is the equivalent of 148 Olympic Swimming pools. The start of this global restoration programme has been dramatically marked by the word ‘HOPE’, off the island of Bontosua in the Spermonde Archipelago, Indonesia in the mega-biodiversity hot spot of the coral triangle. The letters, which can be seen from Google Earth, have been formed by the careful rebuilding of the reef in the otherwise barren rubble fields and represents the first step in the regeneration of the entire system.
In just two years, coral cover has increased from 5% to 55%, fish abundance has risen, and the recovered reefs have seen the return of species such as sharks and turtles. SHEBA® has committed to a ten-year investment in coral reef restoration, which not only includes Hope Reef but other sites around the world.
Barry Parkin, Chief Procurement & Sustainability Officer at Mars, Incorporated comments:
“We care deeply about the health of our planet, our forests and the oceans, all of which are completely interconnected. The Business Avengers initiative highlights the importance of collaboration and cross-industry partnerships in catalysing positive change and accelerating progress, all through the lens of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Companies have a responsibility to do all that they can to take pressure off vulnerable ecosystems and restore them where they can. As a family-owned, purpose-driven company we’re focused on doing business in a way that builds a better, more sustainable world for people and pets.”
Professor David Smith, Chief Marine Scientist at Mars, Incorporated adds:
“As we prepare for a future of more than 10 billion people and more pets, sustainable business practice which is led by science and cares about the planet and our oceans is essential. Sustainably sourcing fish and restoring coral are just two ways that Mars Petcare can lend its support towards SDG No. 14.
Our efforts around the world to restore and regenerate these precious ecosystems are showing exciting results and having a positive impact on local communities, which we’re delighted to see. We hope our efforts inspire others to join us, so we can all play our part in helping to prevent the extinction of our coral reefs as well as the collapse of fisheries around the world.”
Gail Gallie, Co-Founder, Project Everyone comments:
“We are absolutely delighted to welcome Mars into the Business Avengers community. Mars is well known as a family business with a strong sense of purpose and Mars Petcare’s work on coral restoration is another excellent example of a Business Avenger company leading with their action towards achieving the Global Goals. We look forward to supporting their work and collaborating to drive particular awareness towards SDG 14 and the critical issue of ocean health.”
About Mars, Incorporated
For more than a century, Mars, Incorporated has been driven by the belief that the world we want tomorrow starts with how we do business today. This idea is at the center of who we have always been as a global, family-owned business. Today, Mars is transforming, innovating and evolving in ways that affirm our commitment to making a positive impact on the world around us.
Across our diverse and expanding portfolio of confectionery, food, and Petcare products and services, we employ 133,000 dedicated Associates who are all moving in the same direction: forward. With $40 billion in annual sales, we produce some of the world’s best-loved brands including DOVE®, EXTRA®, M&M’s®, MILKY WAY®, SNICKERS®, TWIX®, ORBIT®, PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, SKITTLES®, BEN’S ORIGINAL™, WHISKAS®, COCOAVIA®, and 5™; and take care of half of the world’s pets through our nutrition, health and services businesses, including AniCura, Banfield Pet Hospitals™, BluePearl®, Linnaeus, and VCA™.
We know we can only be truly successful if our suppliers and the communities in which we operate prosper as well. The Mars Five Principles – Quality, Responsibility, Mutuality, Efficiency and Freedom – inspire our Associates to take action every day to help create a world tomorrow in which the planet, its people and pets can thrive.
About Mars Petcare Mars
Petcare is part of Mars, Incorporated, a global, family-owned business. At Mars Petcare, our nearly 100,000 Associates are dedicated to creating A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS™, where all pets are healthy, happy and welcome. Today, our diverse portfolio of almost 50 products and services serves the needs of pets in around 130 countries. Our science-backed pet food, care and treats are designed to meet the individual needs of pets through brands like PEDIGREE®, WHISKAS®, ROYAL CANIN®, NUTRO™, GREENIES™, SHEBA®, CESAR®, IAMS™ and EUKANUBA™. Mars Petcare is also a leading veterinary health provider with an international network of over 2,500 pet hospitals including BANFIELD™, BLUEPEARL™, VCA™, Linnaeus, VSH and AniCura, and diagnostic services via Antech. And at Kinship, we are helping everyone pet parent like a pro with pioneering brands like WISDOM PANEL™, WHISTLE™, and the LEAP VENTURE STUDIO accelerator and COMPANION FUND™ programs that drive innovation and disruption in the pet care industry. At WALTHAM Petcare Science Institute, we are advancing research that improves the lives of pets and deepens our understanding of the human animal bond. To learn more, visit our website or follow us on Instagram and LinkedIn.
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