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Maple Leaf Foods releases report on financial and sustainability performance

Company details progress as it looks to become the most sustainable protein company on earth
maple leaf foods

Maple Leaf Foods released its first annual integrated report this week highlighting its 2022 financial and sustainability performance. 

In his opening letter to stakeholders, Maple Leaf Foods' executive chair and CEO Michael McCain reflected on 2022 and inflation, supply chain disruptions, labour challenges and the climate crisis. 

"These pressures have tested our resilience and challenged our optimism. Yet I remain an optimist – focused on the long-term, grounded in the knowledge that our business fundamentals are strong, and certain of the success we will achieve as we execute our strategy," McCain said. "The United Nations has warned that we are on a path to untold human disaster without rapid, far-reaching, and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society. We are using our voice and our actions to make a difference."

In 2022, the company exceeded its Food Safety Incident Rate (FSIR) target by 42% and Quality Incident Rate (QIR) target by 36%. 

Maple Leaf Foods also developed a Sanitation Incident Reporting (SIR) metric to measure the effectiveness of sanitation programs and practices. By the end of 2022, company-wide SIR performance improved by 17% from the previous year and by 69% from the 2019 baseline.

READ: Maple Leaf Foods to offer $15,000 in scholarships in 2023

Antibiotic use in the pigs that Maple Leaf raises continued trending downward in 2022. 

The opening of the company’s poultry plant in London, Ont. ushered in several enhancements, including expanded use of controlled atmosphere stunning, new environmentally protected lairage for chickens and special blue lights that have a calming effect on birds.

Part of its goal to achieve 50/50 gender balance in managerial roles, Maple Leaf Foods reported that women held 39% of manager and above-level roles by the end of 2022, coming in short of its 50% target.  

When it comes to occupational health and safety,  the company achieved a Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) of 0.40 in 2022 – a 93.6% improvement since its 2012 baseline reporting year and has had zero fatalities for over a decade. 

Maple Leaf Foods said its environmental performance plateaued in 2022 due to factors exacerbated by the post-pandemic environment and the commissioning and start-up of four new facilities/expansions located in Ontario, Manitoba and Indiana that consumed utilities without producing products, which skewed intensity performance.

A team has been deployed to focus on reduction and optimization opportunities, and to explore high-impact greenhouse gas reduction technologies, Maple Leaf Foods said. 

The company also continued its partnership with Nutrien to work with farmers who provide feed for its animals to implement regenerative agriculture practices on their farms. 

Finally, Maple Leaf Foods reduced the amount of packaging it uses and made plastic packaging more recyclable. It’s also incorporating post-consumer recycled content (PCR) into its packaging. 

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