An article talks about how industries are not evolving the 100-year old model of cheap land and labor. While they are essential tenets on which the world economy runs and grows, corporate social responsibilities are the total of our collective actions to steward and bolster the community around us. Corporate Social duties is not an onus on organizations, but an imperative to build a better world. Thankfully, the food industry in the US has firmed up its resolve and is considered the most respected in its CSR efforts, according to a study by a research firm, Penn Schoen Berland. American biscuit manufacturing companies like Kraft Foods major have vision statements of being responsible for future generations. The industry that feeds the world has a significant social mandate on its shoulders, in the new sharing economy we live in.
Growth, in this day, is not just profits. Growth is taking on different forms of customer satisfaction, net promoter scores and yes, sustainability. Companies are counting the cost of invading the future of our world at the expense of exploiting their human capital. Since food manufacturing is a highly capital and labor industry, CSR initiatives that take on multiple forms are not just identifying them as critical players in the community, but those as responsible constituents that can mold it into something better. Also, social media and rising accountability from consumers are not just a threat to being compliant to corporate social responsibilities mandated by governments, but to be proactive in contributing to the betterment of this world. Snack food manufacturers in India and across the world like Kellogg’s have trust as their central message. That’s inclusive growth at its foundation when say, biscuit manufacturing companies not just utilize the resources around their facilities, but conduct drives on effects of junk food, and how eating right is the path to living right. Corporate social responsibilities show how companies live and breathe the tenets of humanity. The food processing sector in India contributes around 12% to India’s GDP and employs more than 1.6 million workers. If the food industry sets the benchmark in building communities around its operations, other sectors will have to sit up and emulate the great work being done.
Social & Sustainable Change Inspired by The Corporate Vision
We live in very competitive and challenging times, with disruptors springing up by the dime, threatening to upend established businesses. Sometimes, the disruptors shoot themselves in the foot as well, reaching goals through unscrupulous means. Regardless of the company’s path to profitability and positive balance sheets, the vision of the society is always something that engenders long-term, strategic planning that goes above and beyond near-term goals like profit and growth. The latter is not to be a negatively connoted, but corporate social responsibilities are usually directly tied to a company’s vision statement. Firms like fast food retailers or snack food manufacturers like Haldirams have elaborate vision statements that cover creating sustainable growth curves, promoting environmental protection and furthering employee interests. Who doesn’t remember KFC employing differently abled servers across the country? As a result, the group parent of the KFC, Yum! Restaurants were awarded the National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities. Sales went through the roof, and the company charted a path of its own. Corporate Social responsibilities go further beyond, where businesses begin to give back to the communities they have their footprint in and contribute their earnings with those around them.
The Buck Goes Beyond Brand Equity
In a recent study done, the current reality is startling: Only 8 percent of consumers feel corporations are being proactive to protect the environment, as opposed to 44 percent among individuals, and 41 by nonprofits. However, research also shows that companies who demonstrate thought leadership in going above and beyond the mandated effort of corporate social responsibilities required by respective governments give them the absolute reason to transact with them. A company is defined as an entity or an invisible person that engages in business transactions with set objectives. In developing countries like India, there are urban-rural supply and patronage gaps, where the latter usually is at a disadvantage. An essential component of Indian food exports is biscuit manufacturing companies. These companies are not just launching innovative campaigns like a beach cleaning campaign by Dunkin Donuts, but are thinking much beyond at how to build a more responsible organization that has a future outlook for the world, not just one that uses resources and ignores the plight of societies around it. Companies are creating jobs for their neighbors, giving fair prices of land acquired, and driving synergies with them.
Food is essential to our survival, and the industry, valued in trillions of dollars is easily one of the biggest industries in both scale and valuation. Improving the image of the industry that not just uses valuable resources from a region to sell it at premium prices to first world countries without returning a share of the profits to the area is the responsibility of every player in that industry. The food manufacturing industry that is leading to Indian food exports that bring in massive reputation to the manufacturing country, along with revenue growth, must not miss the ladder on which it climbed. Companies usually enjoy tax cuts and sops from the government. Therefore those who go beyond their usual corporate social responsibilities will reap more substantial rewards than currently imagined. Be innovative like Mother Dairy which sells 10 lakh liters of token milk from counters every day, and reduces its plastic footprint by 5 tonnes