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One of sustainability's biggest paradoxes is the cities of Europe that energise me as a tourist seem so civilised but history shows Europe hosted 2 world wars and Putins Euro of 2022 may be no safer than Stalin's or Hitler's 1920's E. At we wonder if you could time machine to one year in E-history what year would you choose and what report for humanity would you search for? WHAT GOOD CAN PEOPLES UNITE IF THEY HAVE FIRST ACCESS TO 100 TIMES MORE TECH PER DECADE? Back in 1951 my father found this biggest scoop of his life at It was given to him by Hungarian-American John Von Neumann at Princeton
2006: In dads last 2 years age 84 he hosted a 40 person debate at Royal Automobile Club, a few minutes walk from the Royal Palaces - if the greatest human development advance of his lifetime since meeting Von Neumann was networked by a 1billiongirls (Asian Village mothers 2020-1970) - did anyone in the west or at The UN really know how they did this? 16 journeys to Bangladesh by Graduate Journalists has chalked up 2 resources & where both women empowerment luminaries requested we open learning networkers interpret C for Cooperation (not C for Certification) . We enjoyed more than a little help from many people such as Japan's Ambassador. As Diarists out of St James and alumni of Brother James Wilson have recorded: The UK Royal family left most of the human development of two thirds of beings in Asia to Prince Charles. As a 16 year old he had been assigned the duty to attend the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. 3 happy-good natured seeds were planted from that day on - good relations between Japan Empire and some of Europe's Royals; Sony as Japan's first inward investment in Europe; the birth of whether worldwide sports celebrities are tele2's blessing or a curse as next generations greatest heroines (Tokyo was the first satellite broadcast to a global audience). What if it turns out that in the 21st C European royals value sustainability of millennials more than soundbitimg politicians or professional bureaucrats whose Intel rules have no mathematical or human transparency. This strangely unpopular question is the purpose of events diaries by and education's 3ed co-creative revolution - thanks Glasgow University Union for marking up one of 2023's main QOH events 265th Smithian Moral Sentiments . If you have an event for our diaries to cooperate around please mail me It may be that us far north diaspora scots are more interdependent on you all Europeans than anyone apart from whomever angry nature or angry purtins hurt next??. Sample some Future History Good/bad News Reports? ...1955 report what was Messina (birthing EU) for? 1945 report what was british language world service for?; 2022-1945 what was UN & ITU for; dad. The economist's norman macrae, spent his last days as teen navigating air planes bomber command burma; he tried his best at reparation ever since- wind assisted, so to speak, by the most valuable question media men were ever given - von neumann 1951 asked dad: to ask anyone/everyone what goods will peoples do with 100 times more uniting tech every decade to 2020s? In 1951, VN had 6 years left working on good (ie way above zero sum human development exchages) after the Goats of maths (including einstein turing ..) had spent moist of their life on the bad on nuclear arms racing. They had a reason to defeat hitler. I am no genius (just a listener who ,oves transparent maps/maths) ---but can anyone tell me why are we currently using nuclear races to defaeal all 8 billion of our beings. MUCH MORE IMPORTANT FROM 9/9/2022: if you have time to add positive thinking to our survey - please do

Monday, August 13, 2018

france's sustainability leaders - a 10 year review

emmanuel faber of danone- featured in latest Economist article below
martin hirsch
maria nowak  -you tell us

youth journalist clubs contributing include journal of social business- foundation norman macrae The Economist's end poverty economist

A tradition of pursuing lofty social goals is going further
THE food industry is going nowhere. Pretty pictures on food packets mislead. Big companies have disconnected people from their sustenance. Consumers, especially millennials, are sceptics about industrial-scale food production. Even sellers of healthy products, such as mineral water, spread harm—just look at billions of their plastic bottles that choke the oceans.
Such views are commonly heard among food activists, radical bloggers or anti-capitalists. Yet these come from Emmanuel Faber, who runs Danone, a large French food company. Mr Faber (pictured) frequently sounds like a doomsayer about his own industry—and about capitalism more broadly. “A revolution” and the end of globalisation are nigh, he says.

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Danone is well-placed to spot such changes. With its headquarters in Paris, the company sells to over 130 countries and made nearly €25bn ($28bn) in revenues last year. Mostly it sells dairy goods such as Activia yogurt, mineral water (in plastic bottles) such as Evian or Volvic, and baby food. Mr Faber sees change driven mostly by the new habits of consumers in rich countries. “People are walking out of brands that they’ve been consuming for decades,” he says. Millennials in particular do not think their food system works and are shopping locally, favouring smaller producers and buying organic, plant-based or GM-free products.
Danone’s answer is to rethink the motivating idea of the company. That means rejecting the Anglo-Saxon idea that a firm exists primarily to maximise the welfare of its owners, the shareholders. Danone is pursuing what Mr Faber sees as a more meaningful goal. The “purpose of this firm is not to create shareholder value”, he says. Instead it is to get healthy food to as many mouths as possible, benefiting everyone from suppliers to consumers to owners.
In part, this serves as savvy marketing; Mr Faber, a wiry rock-climber, is living the brand. The approach is also consistent with Danone’s history going back well over a century. In a speech in Marseille in 1972 a former boss, Antoine Riboud, launched the idea of the company having a “dual project”, meaning it should pursue both economic and social benefits. That speech, influenced by his Socialist leanings and anti-capitalist protests and social upheaval from 1968 onwards, is still dutifully cited by senior management.
The firm does put its money where its mouth is. It has sold subsidiaries that produced biscuits, chocolate and beer, for example. Evian, its high-end mineral water brand, which accounts for roughly 3% of revenues, is trying to become carbon neutral. Danone is working on a way to make recycled plastic, which is often grey, appealing to drink from. Danone also runs large-scale, non-profit “social businesses”, such as one in co-operation with Muhammad Yunus, a Nobel laureate, which provides high-quality and nutritious yogurt cheaply to Bangladeshi children. Mr Faber previously led this part of the company.
The latest effort is to win certification as a “B Corporation”, a label meant to reflect a firm’s ethical, social, environmental practices. Smaller outfits, such as Patagonia, a clothing firm, or Ben and Jerry’s ice-cream (now part of Unilever) were early B Corps. Some 2,500 have been certified in the past decade or so. Athleta, an “athleisure” firm owned by the Gap clothing chain, became a B Corp in March. Firms scrutinise each other, along with independent monitors.
So far around 30% of Danone’s various subsidiaries are thus certified. The goal is to do them all within a few years, at least by 2030. In April Danone North America, encompassing WhiteWave, an organic-food firm that Danone bought in 2017 for $12.5bn, became the world’s biggest B Corp. The idea is that the label will help to win back trust from consumers.
Relatively few people, at least outside America, have heard of B Corps, although Walmart, Danone’s biggest single customer, is an enthusiastic promoter and pushes B-Corp goods in its stores. In America B Corps are associated with (but different from) Benefit Corporations, a legal status for firms that lets them seek goals other than maximising shareholder welfare.
B Corps are certified by an independent movement called B Lab, founded by Jay Coen Gilbert. Like Mr Faber, he talks of a pressing need to rethink the philosophy of the company, saying “we need to correct an error in the source code of capitalism: shareholder primacy”. B Corps, he says, promote better governance and better serve the interests of workers, suppliers and wider society, in addition to investors. He notes that Larry Fink, chairman of BlackRock, the world’s biggest asset manager, said much the same in a letter to companies in January.
Prophet with profits
Does Danone’s radical approach hold water? Other consumer giants, such as Unilever, emphasise that giant firms should lead on environmental, social and governance topics. But Danone’s virtue-signalling goes further, analysts agree. All the same, Martin Deboo, of Jefferies International, a bank, notes that Danone has a mixed reputation among European investors. The firm had been trying to up its returns, but its high-priced purchase of WhiteWave, which has low returns, was disappointing, he says. Danone’s returns of around 8% on invested capital are relatively low compared to its peers. After rumours in the summer of 2017 that an activist investor was circling, the firm’s share price leapt, suggesting buyers hoped new management could lift its performance.
Over time, Danone’s approach may become more appealing to mainstream investors. Long-term asset managers, banks, and other financial partners say they feel social and environmental obligations getting stronger. Yngve Slyngstad, the head of Norway’s pension fund, says he is obliged to consider how investment decisions today might affect future generations and ask how firms might influence society, say, over climate change. The fund owns nearly $1bn of Danone stock (1.7% of the total).
Danone points to other financial benefits of its approach. It trumpets, for example, a deal announced in February with 12 creditors. Cecile Cabanis, its chief financial officer, describes a syndicated credit facility of €2bn that is tied to Danone’s B-Corp status plus other environmental, social and governance goals. As more of Danone is certified, she says, the margin payable on the credit will gradually fall. Mr Faber does concede that ultimately, he himself will be judged by Danone’s share price. The proof of the pudding will be in the eating.

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