Risks and opportunities [GRI 103-1]
In 2020, all health-related matters were a higher priority for consumers due to the emergency caused by the COVID-19, which generated considerations about the consumption patterns and created a trend focused on seeking food products that strengthen the immune system. However, the global concern for obesity remains a relevant subject in the global agenda.
According to the report titled The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020: Transforming food systems for affordable healthy diets, conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the burden of malnutrition in all its forms remains a major challenge. The document states: “Certain progress has been achieved in relation to the delay of growth among children, the low birth weight and the exclusive breastfeeding, but at a pace that is still too slow. No improvements have been achieved in terms of child obesity, and this affliction is rising among adults throughout the world.”
These issues continue to exert pressure with regard to the task of continuing to adjust the regulatory frameworks for the food sector and trigger alerts among social groups dealing with health matters.
- While being aware of obesity’s multi-causality and of its capacity to contribute to the improvement of the health conditions of the population, Grupo Nutresa continues reformulating its products, providing clear nutritional information and promoting healthy lifestyles.
- Continue implementing initiatives focused on promoting healthy eating habits, physical activity and the practice of key hygiene practices by means of strategies that strengthen both the school and community environments.
Future outlook and goals for 2030
- Innovating with nutritious and healthy products that contribute to people’s well-being and to the planet’s sustainability. By 2030, 50% of the innovations must fulfill such purpose, meeting the consumer’s concerns regarding health and planet Earth, as well as their aspirations for products that preserve the indulgence that is culturally expected from food.
- Providing quality of life to consumers by means of product alternatives that meet their nutrition, health and well-being aspirations.
- Boosting strategies that promote healthy lifestyles and balanced diets, and enable an informed decision-making process.
- Supporting the education sector and the value chain that is experiencing poverty in relation to the integration of healthy lifestyles and the creation of partnerships with both public and private organizations across the strategic region.
- Consolidation of Bénet’s powdered products
The Company continues positioning its nutritional shake-type beverages as a source of energy and nutrients that favor a good functioning of the body and provide benefits for people’s immune system, skin and hair. The brand also has powdered food products for children that promote good nutrition and contribute to an adequate growth and development as they are a source of protein, fiber, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), vitamins and minerals.
- Healthy nutrition with Doria
The Pastas Business, through its Doria brand, created a new experience for Colombian households: “Lo que amas te nutre” (What nourishes you the most). The experience consists in inviting consumers to cook nutritious recipes with the help from cooks and promoting messages related to healthy habits and sustainability via digital channels.
- Use of color additives in instant cold beverages
Tresmontes Lucchetti launched into the market an innovation where 100% of the artificial color additives were replaced with natural color additives (such as turmeric, chlorophyll, black tea and anthocyanins) in the Zuko and Livean brands in Chile, thus overcoming the main consumption obstacle of these beverages and offering products consistent with the consumers’ expectations.
Risk and crisis management
The Organization met the goal of multiplying by 2,5 the portfolio of products that comply with Grupo Nutresa’s healthy profile standards. To achieve this goal, the Company developed capabilities both in the technical and marketing departments, thus enabling it to continue working on the evolution of the portfolios. At the same time, Grupo Nutresa will work on overcoming the new challenge, maintaining the reformulation program to continue decreasing the contents of sugar, fat and sodium of the products.
The relevance of healthy eating habits is growing and lifestyles are changing by conviction in search of wellness. This trend causes the healthy product market to go from a specialized niche to mass consumption, which brings optimism based on the repercussions on people’s health conditions because, according to global data, 49% of the world’s population is overweight, and in Latin America the rate rises to 56%.
The evolution of the regulatory frameworks for the food sector is leaning towards the promotion of these lifestyle changes. Such regulatory frameworks cover subjects as diverse as:
- Contents of targeted nutrients.
- Labeling, marketing and advertising.
- Product offer zones.
- Tax measures.
Conducting a responsible management to minimize the impact on the markets served by Grupo Nutresa is a major priority for the Company, as well as an important opportunity, as these requirements generate a proactive behavior, leadership and better solutions for the needs of the consumers.
Technology and sustainability
For the production of healthy food, the Organization has both traditional and recently developed technologies, which have proven to be efficient and allow ensuring sustainability. The following are some examples of such technologies: 3D printing, biotechnological breakthroughs and the entire framework of the 4.0 technologies that have an impact on the sector’s logistics chain with transparency and productivity.
Regarding the information for consumers, it is important to note that the front panel labeling, which is part of Grupo Nutresa’s strategy, is being replaced by the mandatory labeling that, as public policy instruments, are being implemented in the countries of the strategic region with the aim of informing consumers about the nutrient contents that, when consumed in excess, could adversely affect their health.
Health and nutrition promotion strategies
- Vidarium (Nutrition, health and well-being research center), generation of scientific knowledge related to nourishment and nutrition.
- Nutresa Ventures, evaluation of emerging technologies.
- Other initiatives.
Results of the strategy
- 3.144 product items have been adjusted to the Nutresa nutritional profile.
- 219 sodium reformulations, 124 sugar reformulations and 57 saturated fat reformulations.
- Elimination of nitrites from 90 products of the Cold Cuts Business’s portfolio.
- Progress in the replacement of artificial color additives with natural color additives.
- Evolution in terms of nutritional products with brands such as Bénet, which has a comprehensive portfolio, and Kibo, which offers products that are a good natural source of nutrients; and with the nutritional fortification of traditional portfolio products such as the milk modifiers (for example: Chocolisto) and Doria’s classic pasta products.
- Development of capabilities that allow addressing the portfolio reformulation challenges and incorporating solid research competences that will contribute to sustainability at all levels in the Organization.
Nutritional products as of the closing of the 2010-2020 strategy
- Doria’s Nutrivit line.
- Sello Rojo Vive, among other.
To bridge the gaps regarding the reformulations of the targeted nutrients in terms of public health, and adjust the products to the nutritional profile, Grupo Nutresa used and complemented the installed capacities of research and development laboratories, pilot production plants and application centers. This strategy has been strengthened with the consolidation of Vidarium, which currently has full-cycle research lines focused on producing knowledge and contributing to the preservation of our health through food product proposals.
Results from the promotion of healthy lifestyles in the communities
- Creation of public-private alliances with entities such as the Colombian Ministry of National Education, UNICEF and Universidad de Chile’s Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology for the development of programs for school populations.
- Generation and transfer of knowledge to society through the documentation of the practices carried out.
- Participation in the “Alimentando Sueños” (Feeding dreams) alliance in Colombia to address and eradicate child malnutrition by 2030.
- Promotion of initiatives for raising the awareness of school communities to address the importance of a balanced diet, the increase in physical activity and the implementation of key hygiene practices on a daily basis.
“Nutresa Quiere a los Niños” (Nutresa cares for children)
- Methodological and content adjustments to the program with the aim of enhancing the relevance of the actions.
- Production of a seven-episode web series with art-related and pedagogical contents for the promotion and adoption of healthy lifestyles by the children of Colombian schools.
- Implementation, projected to 2021, of gamification strategies focused on facilitating the learning of key hygiene practices, balanced diets and physical activity.
- Delivery of school kits that include elements that support children’s education process and the didactic booklet called “Una aventura para crecer feliz y más saludable” (An adventure for growing happy and healthy), which contains information about healthy eating habits and key hygiene practices.
- Distribution of biosecurity elements such as face masks and hand sanitizer as part of the school kits.