What is environmental sustainability? The
United Nations defines Sustainable Development as: "development
that meets the needs of the present without compromising the
ability of future generations to meet their own needs."
For us, it's largely about finding new and innovative ways to be
even more efficient with the resources that we use, like water,
energy and raw materials. We believe that by taking small steps to
improve, we can use our scale for good. As Purina's Global
Sustainability Director, Mark Brodeur, explains, "We're a large
company that can make a positive and lasting impact if we focus on
those issues that matter most."
What do we mean by "small steps?"
There's no way that any brand can completely eliminate its
impact on the environment. For example, all products require
energy, water and other resources to be produced and distributed.
Even so, all products and companies have opportunities to improve.
As we search for ways to make the small steps forward, we want
to be honest about the fact that it's a continuous journey. So
where are we right now? As Brodeur explains,
"We're working hard to understand the
environmental impacts along our entire supply chain so that we can
better understand where we are doing well and where opportunities
exist to get even better. For example, we're constantly working to
make our operations more efficient so they maximize the use of
resources, like water and energy, to make the same amount of
product. Plus we're challenging ourselves to raise the bar in other
important areas like packaging, transportation and ingredient
As we continue taking small steps forward, we plan to be
transparent about the realities of our efforts, while continually
looking for even more ways to improve the environmental performance
of our products and our company.
Starting at Home
Our St. Louis headquarters is the center of our sustainability
efforts, where a dedicated and cross-functional team of experts
resides. In the last three years, we've made several environmental
improvements on this campus:
- A campus-wide lighting project that has reduced energy
consumption by 50%
- Installation of water-efficient toilets that reduced gallons
per flush by 65%
- Addition of rain-sensing technology to irrigation systems
- First business in St. Louis to require housekeeping contractors
to use green cleaning products and techniques
- LEED Silver certification for the Purina Farms Event Center.
LEED is an internationally recognized designation for leadership in
energy and environmental design.
- Introduction of single-stream waste recycling at Purina's US
headquarters in St. Louis and exceeded goal (30% more
- Continued improvements to the Campus Energy Management Plan.
Recognition received from the Missouri Department of Natural
Resources for energy reduction progress.
- Earned highest government rating, the Energy Star
Award, for two buildings on the St. Louis campus.
- Purchased an electric vehicle for headquarters Security
- Installed photo-voltaic solar and thermal panels on a new
building at St. Louis Purina headquarters.
Trying New Ideas Every Day
"There are multiple pilot projects going on across our St. Louis
headquarters to test new and innovative technologies," Brodeur
explains. For example, the same team responsible for helping the
company reduce energy, water and waste has identified a type of
nanotechnology material that, if coated around pipes, will greatly
reduce heat - and thus energy - from escaping. "We started looking
at whether this would work on the pipes in our factories. We're
always testing new improvements like this across the company."