An important aspect of the AAK Group’s sustainability
work is maintaining global momentum. To ensure this,
the Global CSR Manager is in regular contact with all
sites. Twice a year, consultation meetings with the CSR
team leaders from each site are held where progress
and challenges of the sustainability work is discussed.
Furthermore, the Global CSR Manager visits the
production sites frequently.
To promote the continued sharing of information, best
practices and progress on sustainability ambitions on a
more regular basis, monthly virtual conferences are held
Increasing sustainability awareness
The introduction of dashboards is sharpening attention
on progress made. These comprise a one-page presentation
of data and graphics showing GRI indicators
with high priority or under significant development. A
global dashboard has been created for AAK’s Executive
Committee to follow global developments, while local
dashboards illustrate and benchmark developments at
individual production sites.
The global implementation of our AAK Code of
Conduct is another promoter for the integration of
sustainability in our business. The Code is fully implemented
with all employees having read, understood,
accepted and signed the Code. Further systems have
been established to ensure that our Code is part of the
introduction package for new employees.
Another successful initiative is our CSR Toolbox, a
global one access-point to sustainability material
established at our intranet and available to all AAK
employees. The CSR Toolbox comprises materials such
as policies and codes, presentations, training material,
reports, videos and Q&As.
Furthermore, the short e-learning modules, introduced
in 2014 and targeting specific topics have been
embraced by our global organization and proven to be
an effective way to ensure sustainability is embedded
with our employees globally. We have a strong focus
on being proactive and consequently, existing and new
e-learning modules that need to be passed by defined
target groups are constantly being reviewed, developed
Sustainability inclusion of new sites
When AAK builds or acquires new production sites a
grace period of one full year worth of production is given
before they are being introduced to and integrated into
the global CSR system.
After the first full year of production the site management
is asked to appoint a CSR team leader and set
up a CSR team. The team should have competencies
within human resources, health, safety and environment,
finance, sourcing, operations, and sales.
Once the new CSR team has been established it
receives a first introduction to CSR in AAK and the
company’s “House of Sustainability”. Furthermore, the
team leader will be invited to monthly global virtual
conferences where, among other things, best practices
The next step is the inclusion of the site into our annual
global data collection. To that end the team is introduced
to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), and in particular
the definitions that have been established within the AAK
Group. The spreadsheets that need to be completed
immediately after the end of the year will be thoroughly
reviewed with focus on the individual indicators.
These data together with other sites’ data lay the
foundation for our annual Sustainability Report in which
the importance of the validity of the data is emphasized.
For some new sites this is not far from the way they
are already working. For others it is a completely new
approach. Whatever the case, new sites are warmly
welcomed and receive all the support required, from the
headquarters as well as from other sites, to integrate
into the global CSR system in the best possible way.
with the participation of all CSR team leaders.
To make sustainability even more visible within
the organization, an internal sustainability award is
presented each year to the AAK site or business area
that has demonstrated outstanding sustainability
performances. In 2018, the production site in Zaandijk,
the Netherlands received an award for their overall very
strong sustainability track record including improving
energy and water use efficiency per unit processed