- The highest-ranking companies on Undernutrition are FrieslandCampina, Nestlé and Unilever.
- The five companies that increased their scores substantially on undernutrition are FrieslandCampina, Kellogg, Mondelez, Grupo Bimbo and Danone.
- FrieslandCampina developed a new strategy aimed at addressing undernutrition and already makes a comprehensive set of commitments across the ATNI categories.
The analysis of companies' actions to tackle undernutrition in emerging markets among priority populations yielded the following findings:
- Companies have responded positively to SDG 2 (End hunger). More companies (11 compared to eight in 2016) now commit to address undernutrition, especially through their core businesses as well as other initiatives.
- Twice as many companies provided evidence of investing in research to develop solutions to undernutrition: The number increased from six to 12 between 2016 and 2018.
- However, most companies’ strategies to address undernutrition are not well-structured or informed by regular, well-organized input from independent experts.
- Only three out of 14 companies that do not sell breastmilk substitutes focus on women of childbearing age or on children under two in their commercial and/or non-commercial programs.
- Ten companies commit to improve the affordability and accessibility of products formulated to address undernutrition in underserved population.
- A limited number of companies (five out of 18) demonstrate a commitment to the need to develop and deliver marketing strategies appropriate to reaching undernourished populations.
- Kellogg improved mostly because of new and more detailed disclosure of its activities.
Recommendations for improvement per Undernutrition category
Category A: Governance
- Adopt a formal approach to address undernutrition
- Improve the focus on priority populations and expert guidance
- Pre-competitive collaboration on research to identify nutritional gaps
- Better reporting on efforts to address undernutrition and the level of investments
Category B: Products
- Commitments to develop and introduce new products to fight undernutrition are necessary
- Implementation of tools to evaluate new innovation projects that aim to address undernutrition
- Companies should express clearly that they will follow international guidelines for fortifying food and only fortify products of high underlying quality
- More product formulation activities that focus on women of child-bearing age and children under two are needed
Company C: Accessibility
- Companies need to define clear objectives and targets for making healthy food affordable and accessible to the undernourished
- Accessibility and affordability considerations should be an integral part of a company’s undernutrition strategy
- Exploration of new business models and approaches
Company D: Marketing
- Companies need to demonstrate better that they are aware of the need to develop specific marketing strategies to reach undernourished consumers
- Companies should continue and go beyond gathering consumer and market insights
- Assessed for the first time – further develop methodology to assess performance as well
Company E: Lifestyles
- More focus on nutritional education of undernourished consumers is needed
- A structured approach with independently designed programs and transparency about companies’ roles
Company F: Labeling
- All companies should commit to label fortified products appropriately
- Clear commitments to only place health and nutrition claims on products aiming to address undernutrition when these comply with Codex guidelines
Company G: Engagement
- Structured government engagement in developing countries where companies are present
- More stakeholder engagement to solicit input on companies’ commercial strategies