Main areas of strength
• Kraft Heinz ranks second on the U.S. Index Product Profile with a score of 5.6 out of 10.
• Although the company’s score on the Corporate Profile is low, it has put in place some commitments and initiatives which it reports publicly. The company did not engage with ATNF during the research process.
• The company conducts some nutrition-related risk assessments and reports this in its Form 10-K Annual Report.
• The company supports some social service programs, in collaboration with Feeding America and Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
• There is evidence that Kraft Heinz has introduced new products with an improved nutritional profile in the last three years.
• Kraft Heinz pledges to follow the two main sets of industry self-regulation commitments by being a Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CFBAI) member and supporting the Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU) Guidelines, administered by the U.S. Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB). It has adopted the best practice of not marketing in elementary or middle and high schools.
Priority areas for improvement
• Kraft Heinz ranks ninth on the U.S. Index Corporate Profile with a score of 0.8 out of 10.
• The company was estimated in the Product Profile to generate 41% of 2016 sales from healthy products (having a Health Star Rating (HSR) of 3.5 or more) and 11% from products that meet World Health Organization (WHO) Euro criteria for marketing to children. The company should step up its product reformulation, new product development and/or make acquisitions to improve the healthiness of its U.S. product portfolio.
• In late 2017, the company published its first CSR report providing more nutrition-related information. As this report was released after the assessment deadline, the information was not taken into consideration for scoring. The company could further increase its public disclosure and is encouraged to engage with ATNF to allow for a more complete assessment of its policies and practices.
• The company should increase its focus on nutrition and health, starting by adopting a mission statement and corporate growth strategy that explicitly refer to these business-critical issues. It should publish more information about its commercial approach to improving the accessibility of healthy foods and addressing obesity and diet-related diseases, with a particular reference to priority populations, and its approach to addressing food insecurity in the United States.
• Kraft Heinz should adopt and disclose a Nutrient Profiling System (NPS) to guide its product innovation and reformulation activities, and as the basis for its definition of healthy products.
• Commitments and examples of activities related to the affordability and accessibility of healthy products, support for healthy lifestyles or stakeholder engagement, are limited or non-existent. Kraft Heinz should improve in these areas.
• Kraft Heinz should improve its commitments on responsible marketing to children and other consumers. For example, it could improve its responsible marketing to children policy by lowering its audience threshold to <25%. Further, to address concerns about ‘copy-cat’ products, the company should ensure that all products sold under the Smart Snacks in School regulation meet the same nutrition standards everywhere, including those products that are sold through other channels with a similar ‘look and feel’.