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McDonald's Announces Commitment to Promote Balanced Food and Beverage Choices

MARKETING AND COMMS - McDonald's announced it is partnering with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, founded by the Clinton Foundation and American Heart Association, to increase customers' access to fruit and vegetables and help families and children to make informed choices in keeping with balanced lifestyles. President Bill Clinton, founder of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation; Don Thompson, President and CEO of McDonald's; and Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, announced the groundbreaking Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) commitment on Thursday at the 2013 CGI Annual Meeting in New York City.

Women in Leadership: Good for Us All

LEADERSHIP - The topic of the value of getting more women in the top echelons of corporate leadership has garnered a great deal of coverage as of late. Credit Suisse published a report in 2012 stating that their research shows that having more women on corporate boards increased both the share price — particularly in volatile markets — and the return on equity (ROE) of companies. Norway, the first country to have instituted a quota of 40% on boards in 2003, now says that this presence of women in leadership has made boards and companies more professional and more global, as they had to search outside of the borders of Norway for women to serve. To date, France, Malaysia, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain have followed suit to break this glass ceiling.

BPI Launches New Catalog of Compostable Products

MARKETING AND COMMS - Composters, consumers and foodservice companies now have unprecedented detail — and confidence — in BPI Certified Compostable Products thanks to the industry’s first item-level online database of products.Funded by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI), the new Compostable Products Catalog features more than 3,300 different compostable product SKUs (shelf keeping units), including food serviceware (cups, cutlery, plates and trays), resins and coatings, compostable bags and films.The catalog is believed to be the world’s first web-based catalog to offer searchable product-level information on compostable products, according to BPI.

Former Trader Joe's Exec Wants to Turn Slightly-Past-Its-Prime Food Into New Retailing Concept

WASTE NOT - Food waste is a huge problem in America and globally, with up to 40 percent of perfectly good food being trashed in the US, according to a study by Harvard and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Yet there's a lack of nutritious food in US inner cities and elsewhere.So the ex-president of Trader Joe's is trying to put supply and demand together to create a new form of food retailing. Doug Rauch plans to open a new market, the Daily Table, in Dorchester, Mass., early next year to sell "repurposed" food as is, in lightly processed form — like a fast-food restaurant.

IPCC Confirms Climate Change Caused By Human Action

MARKETING AND COMMS - Leading scientists around the world are now 95 percent confident that human influence is the dominant cause of global warming, according to the Fifth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released Friday.Statistically speaking, this means that that the debate is over — climate change is occurring due to human action. As a result of past, present and expected future emissions of carbon dioxide, the effects of climate change will persist for many centuries even if carbon dioxideemissions stop, IPPC says.

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Levi's, Unilever, Patagonia Among Companies Calling for Carbon Pollution Standards for New Power Plants

COLLABORATION - Nearly two-dozen major U.S. companies and nearly 50 investors with more than $900 billion in collective assets announced their support last week for new carbon pollution standards proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for new power plants. The group, which includes Unilever, Levi Strauss & Co., Symantec, Patagonia, The North Face and the country’s largest public pension fund, CalPERS, urged President Obama to finalize the rule soon and proceed with plans to reduce carbon pollution from existing power plants. The standards are open to public comment.

Leaders Discuss Private Sector's Role in Mitigating Climate Change at REDD+ Talks: NYC

COLLABORATION - Last Thursday at the Bronx Zoo, the United Nations hosted an event to celebrate the five-year anniversary of the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) program and its offshoot REDD+.

Setting the Table for Sustainable Supply Chain Issues

SUPPLY CHAIN - In this Issue in Focus, we are examining the latest tools and initiatives in sustainable supply chain management. Here, guest editor Dave Meyer offers his perspective on the state and direction of the field.

Republic of Tea Launches 95% Biodegradable Single-Serve Pod

CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Socially conscious tea purveyor the Republic of Tea has announced a new line of environmentally friendly, single-serve One Cuppa™ tea pods, that are 95% biodegradable and compatible with most single-serve coffee- and tea- brewing machines. The company says the pods will be available beginning October 1.“We listened to our Citizens who have requested that our premium teas be available for single-serve use. We are so happy to now provide our Citizens with this new, innovative way of enjoying a cup of premium tea. We are also being mindful of the environment with our earth-friendly, 95% biodegradable One Cuppa,” said Republic of Tea CEO Ron Rubin.

A Truer Measure of Economic Well-Being? Replacing GDP with GPI, Part Two

NEW METRICS - The chorus decrying the shortcomings of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a measure of economic well-being has been rising, crescendoing recently with the release of the report by Nobel Laureates Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen commissioned by then French President Nicholas Sarkozy. Here in the US, states such as Maryland and Vermont are beginning to adopt an alternative to GDP: the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI).

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BASF and Heritage Plastics, Inc. form strategic partnership to bring ecovio manufacturing to North America

PRESS RELEASE - BASF and Heritage Plastics, Inc. form strategic partnership to bring ecovio manufacturing to North America Florham Park, NJ, September 24, 2013 – BASF announced today that it has formed a strategic manufacturing partnership with Heritage Plastics, Inc. to produce ecovio® certified compostable products in North America. The partnership enables BASF to begin manufacturing ecovio biopolymers outside of Europe to better serve its customers and to further focus on growth in the rapidly developing North American market. Production of ecovio will begin September 2013 at the Heritage facility in Picayune, Mississippi.

Mondelez International Launches Cocoa Life Sustainability Program in Indonesia

COLLABORATION - Mondelez International has announced an agreement with the Indonesian Coffee and Cocoa Research Institute (ICCRI) and suppliers Armajaro and Olam to promote sustainable Indonesian cocoa farming, improve cocoa bean quality and support the development of Indonesian cocoa communities.

Bombas Socks' One-for-One Model Helping to Warm Feet — and Hearts

PRODUCT, SERVICE & DESIGN INNOVATION - New York-based startup Bombas Socks is poised to revolutionize the sock industry while spreading its message of pushing yourself to “Bee Better.”Two years ago, after learning that socks are the more requested clothing item at homeless shelters, founders David Heath and Randy Goldberg decided to create a company based on the TOMS shoes plan: One for One.Not only did Heath and Goldberg plan that for every pair of socks sold, they would donate one to a person in need, they knew that they needed to create the perfect sock. With all the new designs in the apparel industry in the past couple of decades, socks have pretty much stayed the same; they are more or less an afterthought. Heath and Goldberg worked to create a sock to “look better, feel better and perform better.”

A Truer Measure of Economic Well-Being? Replacing GDP with GPI, Part One

NEW METRICS - The chorus decrying the shortcomings of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a measure of economic well-being has been rising, crescendoing recently with the release of the report by Nobel Laureates Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen commissioned by then French President Nicholas Sarkozy. Here in the US, states such as Maryland and Vermont are beginning to adopt an alternative to GDP: the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI).

New Report Highlights Seven Headlines of Latest Behaviour Change Research

BEHAVIOR CHANGE - New research released last week explores the latest views of leaders in the study of encouraging more conscious and responsible behaviour. The Motivating Millions research, conducted by UK behaviour change consultancy Corporate Culture, was carried out online between March and May of this year. A quick distillation of the research reveals seven themes:

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Apathetic Consumer Discovers 'Hidden Consequences' of Irresponsible Products in Rainforest Alliance's Latest Video

MARKETING AND COMMS - As the Rainforest Alliance’s third annual Follow the Frog Week comes to a close, we take a look at this year’s campaign video, "Hidden Consequences."

McDonald’s Agrees to Phase Out Polystyrene Cups

CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - McDonald’s Corp. has confirmed that it will replace all polystyrene beverage cups with paper cups at its 14,000 U.S. outlets, according to As You Sow (AYS), a nonprofit organization that promotes corporate responsibility through shareholder advocacy. The move comes in response to a shareholder proposal filed by AYS in 2011, asking the fast-food giant to stop using foam. After agreeing to a test replacement of its foam cups with a double-walled paper hot cup at approximately 2,000 restaurants, primarily on the West Coast, in 2012, McDonald’s deemed the pilots successful and the paper cup will now become the standard hot beverage cup at all U.S. outlets.

Jones Lang LaSalle Illustrates Commitment to Responsible Business in Latest Sustainability Report

MARKETING AND COMMS - Jones Lang LaSalle last week released its 2012 Sustainability Report, “Moving toward a more sustainable enterprise,” which details the company’s services, operations and client-focused strategies to achieve long-term sustainable solutions across five sustainability categories: energy and resources; client service excellence; green buildings; community and supply chain; and workplace, well-being and diversity.

Solazyme and Unilever Sign Supply Agreement for Tailored Algal Oil

COLLABORATION - Solazyme, maker of algae-based oils and bioproducts, today announced a commercial supply agreement with Unilever for the first partnered Solazyme Tailored™ Algal Oil, a culmination of five years of collaboration between the companies. The agreement covers the first of Solazyme and Unilever's jointly developed tailored oils with an initial supply of at least 10,000 metric tons (MT), which Unilever says it will use in its Dove and Brylcreem brand personal care products, according to the New York Times.

SNAP Answers: How Can Protecting Nature Help Ensure Food, Energy, Water Security for Nine Billion People?

COLLABORATION - The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) today announced the launch of SNAP (Science for Nature and People), a collaboration aimed at solving the world’s most pressing conservation and human development challenges. The announcement was made at the annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative.SNAP is designed to find practical, knowledge-based ways in which the conservation of nature can help provide food, water, energy and security to Earth's fast-growing population. SNAP will tackle high-profile problems where the solution has a clear pathway to implementation.

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