A group of institutional investors representing $ 1.1 trillion in funding wrote to Morrisons Chairman Andrew Higginson, asking the company to expand sales of healthier food and beverage products.
Investors include NEST, Guy’s & St Thomas’ Foundation, and JO Hambro Capital Management, and the letter was coordinated by ShareAction. They claim that Morrisons’ current healthy eating strategy is not well-developed.
Morrisons has set a goal of increasing the number of healthier, home-branded products to 65% of all home-branded products by 2025. We measure and work on all product lines, not just our own labels.
“Investors want to better understand how supermarkets are responsible for their enormous impact on public health.“Basquez said.
This letter will be issued today (June 10) prior to the Morrisons Shareholders’ Meeting. Shareholders are unable to ask questions this year, so the letter specifically asks the company to disclose its share of total sales of healthier products in food and beverages. Announce a long-term commitment to grow that share “significantly.” In addition, the annual goals for 2022 and beyond will include progress reports on deliveries.
Morrisons: Is your health strategy late?
Morrisons occupies 10% of the grocery market and is one of the largest listed supermarket operators in the UK, along with Tesco and Sainsbury’s.
ShareAction emphasized that of the three companies, only Morrisons has no sales-based health goals. Recently, Tesco succumbed to investor pressure after ShareAction submitted Britain’s first shareholder resolution on health issues to supermarkets..
The Access to Nutrition report also found that Morrison lags behind his rivals in health issues. This report evaluated public commitment and behavior on issues such as nutrient profiling, product prescribing, responsible marketing, and labeling. Morrisons health problems performed at 20%, below Sainsbury’s at 35%, Marks & Spencer at 33%, both Co-op and Tesco at 30%, and Lidl at 25%.
Another Food Foundation report found that “encouraging a healthy diet” was the weakest area of Morrisons performance among the 10 major ESG topics in the supermarket sector.
ShareAction argued that this performance represents a risk to the business as regulations on healthy eating and consumer trends are accelerating.
“There are still questions about the company’s strategy and overall exposure to increasing regulatory pressures and consumer trends that support a healthier diet.”Basquez told Food Navigator: “October 2020 reportAccording to the company, 85% of UK shoppers are actively trying to improve their diet when shopping, so the company’s growing consumer expectations are to target healthier sales. It is likely to help respond to. “
For this reason, we today called on investors to work with investors to promise to disclose and increase the percentage of healthier food and beverage product sales, following other major UK supermarkets. I’m happy. We hope that Morrison’s Board of Directors will seize this opportunity to build a belief in social responsibility and at the same time show shareholders that it is properly managing the growing financial risks and opportunities in this area. “
Morrisons is “committed” to supporting healthy choices
A Morrisons spokeswoman told FoodNavigator that the supermarket group is “committed” to promoting healthier choices and “supports” performance goals and measurements.
“We are committed to helping our customers make healthier choices, measuring their performance and setting meaningful goals. We are already healthy. We have announced the percentage of our own branded products that are classified as, and we promise to increase this. “A spokeswoman pointed out.
The supermarket group, which operates a vertically integrated supply chain and manufactures many of its own label lines on its own, highlighted many areas, especially the progress of reforms.
In 2020, the company reduced 8.6 billion calories, 832 tonnes of sugar and 44 tonnes of salt from its brand through reform work. These efforts are going well this year, with an additional 5.8 billion calories, 504 tonnes of sugar and 42.7 tonnes of salt removed from the company’s labeling.
The company recently launched New Nourish, a unique label range focused on health. This includes 54 lines. Morrisons plans to expand its brand to around 100 lines in the future.
At launch, Tessa Callahan, Head of Brand & Design, said: “Nourish goes on sale when not only diet, but general health and immunity are our top priorities for our customers. Affordable.”
The supermarket is also advancing nutrition labeling with the launch of its own healthy living icon in January. The system is based on the nutrition profiling funnel model and combines the British Signal, the French NutriScore and the Australian Health Star model. This will be overlaid with a traffic light label. Morrisons now states that 11% of its brand line has passed this model, which is being added to more and more products.
By the end of 2021, Morrisons will remove cartoon characters from all children’s products that are HFSS.
Basquez acknowledged that Morrisons has “made many advances” in “some aspects” of his health strategy, including the reorganization of his own label.
However, the ShareAction manager told FoodNavigator: “In contrast, there is little information about whether Morrisons’ marketing and advertising strategies support and, if so, how to support a healthy diet. Improving the number of healthy home-branded products This is important because it only leads to positive public health results if the sale is successful. These varieties are also increasing.
Morrisons currently has no goals to increase these sales, but Tesco (65% by 2025), Sainsbury’s (45% by 2020, imminent goals after 2020), M & S (until 2022) To 50%), ALDI (70% by 2025)) has set goals to expand sales of healthier food and beverage products.
“Neither share action nor the investors who support this promotion want to dictate how Morrisons should achieve these goals. These are management decisions and at the discretion of management. In-store promotions and external marketing all play a role in influencing consumer purchasing decisions, which can be useful tools for supermarkets seeking to promote healthy products. I will. “
https://www.foodnavigator.com/Article/2021/06/10/Morrisons-hails-progress-on-reformulation-as-investors-call-out-exposure-to-unhealthy-sales?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=RSS Morrisons praises progress in reforms as investors call for exposure to unhealthy sales