Sustainability investment doubled by Thai union to benefit oceans and communities

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

Unrelenting in his pursuit of sustainability, Thiraphong Chansiri, CEO of Thai Union Group PCL, a dominant player in the global seafood manufacturing scene, divulged pivotal advancements in the company’s ecological strategy.

Always at the forefront of advocating sustainable business practices, Thiraphong explained the profound pressure on our oceans, harbouring the livelihood and sustenance of up to 600 million people, particularly in lesser developed nations. He is of the firm belief that an escalation in the company’s sustainability goals is an urgent necessity.

Thai Union initially introduced SeaChange in 2016, seeing a colossal investment of US$100 million set aside to revolutionise the seafood sector. This pioneering endeavour has since doubled, climbing to a staggering US$200 million, equal to the Thai Union’s total 2022 net profit of 7.2 billion baht. The amplified funds are expected to expedite the SeaChange initiative’s ambitious objectives for the decade leading to 2030.

Thiraphong made clear his understanding of the urgency. He said…

“This significant investment is not just an expense; it is truly for all stakeholders. It is the key to safeguarding our collective sustainable future.”

He elaborates on the worsening state of the environment, proclaiming that the time for transformative change is now imminent. SeaChange 2030 is emblematic of this new era of ambitious, planet-saving objectives that will restructure the worldwide seafood value chain.

Ambitious in its plan, SeaChange 2030 seeks to invigorate not only the ecosystem but the very communities that rely upon it. Thiraphong believes the well-being of the people must be prioritised equally to sustainable sourcing and operations. This goal is aligned with 10 of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals to ensure a resilient seafood industry.

Thai Union’s chief sustainability officer, Adam Brennan, made note of their climate action commitment.

“Thailand has set itself on a course to achieve net zero by 2065. Realising that the food industry accounts for 26% of global greenhouse gas emissions, Thai Union Group plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 42% across its production process and supply chain by 2030 and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The company’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are supporting the government’s own net zero goal.”

The company has also broadened its environmentally conscious sourcing pledge beyond simply tuna, its primary focus since 2016. Thai Union will ensure that all its harvested seafood is responsibly sourced or from fisheries associated with improvement programs.

Shrimp production will be in the spotlight to mitigate its ecological impact and meet industry standards in welfare and working conditions. With over 22,000 shrimp farms in Thailand alone, the Thai Union is keen to collaborate only with suppliers that remain committed to the goals of traceability, environmental protection and fair treatment of workers.

Furthermore, the Thai Union aims to achieve 100% sustainable packaging for its branded products by 2025 and advocates for 60% of private label products by 2030. Displacement of 1,500 tonnes of ocean-bound plastic through preventative and mitigative measures will also be at the forefront of their efforts.

The company’s dedication to its labour force is no less significant. The objective is to achieve gender equality at the management level and ensure adherence to responsible labour practices in all their sourcing vessels and farms. An Ethical Migrant Recruitment Policy is in place to ensure a safe and fair recruitment journey for migrant workers, stressing the protection of not only the employees but also those in the supply chain.

Thai Union’s commendable contributions to sustainability have earned them consistent recognition by institutions like the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, marking the ninth consecutive year in 2022, reported Bangkok Post. Thiraphong said…

“Our commitment to sustainability goes beyond customers and investors; it is now a fundamental aspect of the company’s identity.

“In an ever-changing world, marked by climate challenges like hot climates, droughts and floods, Thai Union is dedicated to aligning with the environment’s overall well-being, striving to be the world’s most trusted seafood company.”

Business NewsThailand News

Alex Morgan

Alex is a 42-year-old former corporate executive and business consultant with a degree in business administration. Boasting over 15 years of experience working in various industries, including technology, finance, and marketing, Alex has acquired in-depth knowledge about business strategies, management principles, and market trends. In recent years, Alex has transitioned into writing business articles and providing expert commentary on business-related issues. Fluent in English and proficient in data analysis, Alex strives to deliver well-researched and insightful content to readers, combining practical experience with a keen analytical eye to offer valuable perspectives on the ever-evolving business landscape.

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