ACTIAM, Australian Ethical Investment, Nelson Capital Management, Royal London Asset Management (RLAM), Trillium Asset Management and Walden Asset Management are the latest investors to join an international collaborative initiative aimed at encouraging major global food companies to strengthen their management systems and processes on farm animal welfare.
They join the ten institutional investors – Aviva Investors, BNP Paribas Investment Partners, the Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church, Coller Capital, EdenTree Investment Management, Epworth Investment Management, NEI Investments, Rathbone Greenbank Investments, Schroders and Triodos Bank – who are already working with the Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare to encourage major global food companies to strengthen their farm animal welfare approaches.
The collaborative engagement builds on the Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare’s annual review of how the world’s leading food companies are managing and reporting their farm animal welfare practices.
The third Benchmark report, launched in February 2015, evaluated 80 global food companies on their policies, governance, management processes and reporting on farm animal welfare. Ten (10) companies were considered to have made strong commitments to farm animal welfare and to have well developed management systems and processes. However, 40 of the 80 provided little or no evidence that farm animal welfare was recognised as a business issue or that that the risks and opportunities associated with farm animal welfare were being effectively managed.
The participating institutions are encouraging the low ranking companies in the Benchmark to improve their farm animal welfare policies, practices and reporting. They are also commending the high ranking companies for their performance in the Benchmark.
Programme Director, Nicky Amos commented: “The fact that Australian and US investors have joined investors from the UK, the Netherlands, France and Canada in engaging on farm animal welfare, provides clear evidence that farm animal welfare is a sustainability issue that is of global relevance to institutional investors”.
Dr Rory Sullivan, Expert Adviser to the Benchmark, added: “The Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare provides a clear framework for investor engagement with companies, and provides companies with clear guidance on how they can improve their management and their performance of farm animal welfare. Furthermore, the fact that it is repeated annually means that the Benchmark allows the effectiveness of engagement to be clearly tracked”.
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