The purpose of this message is to provide you with a detailed summary of what I will present in my RWA Speed Presenting exercise. I will be presenting my real world application (RWA) exercise over the term “sustainability” in chapter seven, titled social responsibility and ethics, in our marketing textbook. I will provide an example of how McCormick has decided to implement sustainability practices into its business plans and goals.
I have chosen the term “sustainability” as the concept I will focus on in my presentation.
Sustainability is a way that businesses can demonstrate their social responsibility. The focus of sustainability is to protect and care for our natural environment. It focuses on thinking about our environment and the way we affect it in the long term (Ferrell, Pride 102). Businesses’ day-to-day activities can have a significant impact on the well being of our planet, and marketers are starting to realize the importance and urgency of consciously addressing the issue.
Business strategies, economic decisions, work practices, lifestyles, and technologies can all have an impact on the health of our planet.
Companies can try to impact sustainability by changing their business practices, by implementing some green alternatives, by cutting back on the use of pollutants, by consciously keeping track of how their business is impacting the world around them, etc. Businesses can also help the sustainability cause by simply supporting environmental initiatives by donating money, time, or resources. Marketing your products as sustainably raised or produced can help companies generate positive publicity, which can often lead to an increase of sales and profits.
There are many ways to implement sustainability into a business, but there are four major goals that some environmentalists believe businesses should implement into their plans: reduce waste, efficiently produce products, account for environmental costs when pricing a product, and make environmentalism profitable (Ferrell, Pride 103-104).
To help provide a specific example of how a business can exemplify sustainability, I have decided to research McCormick, which was listed on Forbes’ list of The World’s Most Sustainable Companies, 2018. I have chosen McCormick’s newly improved policies as my RWA concept since I believe their business model and care for the sustainability of our planet are exemplary.
McCormick recognizes that the global fabrication, circulation, and consumption of farmed raw materials create substantial impacts on the natural environment and the well-being of our planet, and they have recently decided to make sustainability one of their most important goals of their company. McCormick acknowledges that it can be a great challenge to keep the environment as a company’s number one priority when the majority of their agricultural suppliers are small local farmers, but they have decided to stick to their mission statement and only work with people who hold the same ethics as they do. Their website outlines different ways that they have changed their business practice to make it more sustainable and environmentally friendly.
In their website, McCormick has a whole section dedicated to their sustainable agriculture policy. It contains information about how their policies keep the environment and the communities in which the spices are grown in mind.
One of the first issues this part of the website addresses is the use of agrochemicals. Pesticides and fertilizers are often used in most farmland, but they can have detrimental effects on the environment. Runoff can cause the death of wildlife, and pollute nearby land and water. To confront this matter, McCormick sets strict rules and guidelines for their workers and local farmers to use chemical products in agreement with the laws and regulations of its respective country. The company will also encourage and educate its employees on the importance and practice of reducing the possible damaging impacts on water quality and air quality. McCormick encourages their suppliers to use natural methods of pest control, such as “integrated pest management techniques” and condemn the use of any substances that are currently banned under the “Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants.” If any products that are listed in that ban are used, it is a priority to eliminate them and make a plan to implement an alternative.
Another main point that McCormick addresses on this page is water conservation. McCormick expects their farmers to incessantly advance their water use practices by making them more efficient and by reducing water waste. Water management plans are being developed to implement the newest technology to provide conscientious water use. Agriculture is the leading use of fresh water in the world, and we are facing the threat of a diminishing global water supply. McCormick is committed to research and implementation of water conservation strategies.
The last three topics that McCormick addresses are soil management, biodiversity, and habitat conservation. It is easy to deplete land of its nutrients when farming the same crop consistently over the same piece of land. The company has established programs to teach local farmers about concepts like crop rotation and soil depletion. In addition to soil loss and contamination, the company also focuses on ensuring that deforestation is not something that spice production will greatly contribute to. Allowing local ecosystems to thrive and provide a home for diverse wildlife is also one of the company’s missions. They have decided to ban the practice of agriculture in any high conservation areas, such as protected wetlands and rainforests. McCormick has begun to shift their energy production partners to increase their use of renewable energy sources to help the environment and our planet thrive.
I chose this RWA example because McCormick embodies what I will look for when I choose to work for a company. I am majoring in supply chain management, and I am particularly interested in the procurement of products that have been sustainably and ethically sourced. I believe sustainability is one of the most pressing and relevant issues we are facing as a society. Although it is critical for individuals to change their day-to-day habits by keeping the planet in mind, it is large businesses that are making the biggest impact on the pollution and diminishing the sustainability of our planet. I plan to go into procurement, and looking for a company that places a high degree of importance on the effect of sourcing their products has on the environment is one of my biggest factors that I will be considering when I choose what company I want to align my goals and ethics with.
Currently, cost reduction and a focus on social responsibility are driving sustainability in the supply chain. According to an article by Rich Weissman, “the gap between sustainable and low cost procurement is narrowing.” Suppliers are beginning to understand the importance of sustainability, and it is becoming a common standard for any company. The world is realizing that the costs associated with hurting our air quality, soil, and water are far greater than we once thought. By taking these costs into account, companies are starting to realize that keeping sustainability in mind is the best thing we can do economically. Society and the supply chain will benefit from implementing sustainable practices. A small but important specific example is the use of alternative energy when dealing with transportation and freight. Companies are starting to consider the benefits of using natural gas or electric sources as opposed to diesel. Over time, these changes can reduce operating costs, ultimately helping companies’ profits and cost savings, as well as the environment.
I’m excited for the opportunity to share my knowledge and research about sustainability on Friday, October 26, 2018 at 10:20 AM in Wehner room 155. I will see you then.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at 713-412-9546 or email me at [email protected]. I would appreciate your feedback.