Walking the Talk
Target Unveils Plan to Co-Create an Equitable, Sustainable Future for All

Among the retailer’s goals are to achieve 20% Black team member representation across the company by 2023; and reach net zero in both waste to landfill and value-chain-wide emissions, and 100% owned-brand product circularity, by 2040.

This week, Target Corporation unveiled Target Forward — a strategy aimed at advancing the retailer’s social and environmental sustainability. While it’s been at the forefront of the movement for years, Target Forward marks a new era in sustainability for the company — which includes ambitions to co-create an equitable and regenerative future with its guests, partners and communities.

“As a company and a member of the global community, it’s imperative for both the health of our business and of our planet that we embrace new ways to move forward,” said chairman and CEO Brian Cornell. “We know sustainability is tied to business resiliency and growth, and that our size and scale can drive change that is good for all. Target Forward influences every corner of our business, deepens our collaboration with our partners and builds on our past efforts to ensure a better future for generations to come.”

Target’s sustainability commitments

The commitments Target is making with Target Forward work toward three critical ambitions:

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    to design and elevate sustainable brands;

  • to innovate to eliminate waste;

  • and to accelerate opportunity and equity.

Signature goals include:

  • By 2030, Target aims to be the market leader for creating and curating inclusive, sustainable brands and experiences. The retailer offers pro-bono consulting for BIPOC-owned small businesses, and has launched a Buy Black badge that highlights Black-owned and -founded brands to foster racial equity in the marketplace.

  • By 2040, Target plans for 100 percent of its owned-brand products to be designed for circularity. Target’s teams will continue designing to eliminate waste — using materials that are regenerative, recycled or sourced sustainably to create products that are more durable, easily repaired or recyclable. Through its participation in the US Plastics Pact, Target is helping to execute an aggressive national strategy to ensure all plastic packaging will be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025.

  • By 2040, Target commits to being a net-zero enterprise — zero waste to landfill in its US operations (building on its existing work to eliminate food waste and reinvent the plastic bag) and net zero emissions across both its operations and supply chain, inclusive of scopes 1, 2 and 3.

  • By 2030, Target aims to build a team that equitably reflects the communities it serves, beginning with its commitment to increase Black team member representation across the company by 20 percent by 2023. This builds on the work of the company’s Racial Equity Action and Change committee (REACH) — launched in August 2020 — which leads efforts on this front in four areas: Team, Guests, Communities and Civic Engagement and Public Policy.

“We want our guests to turn to Target first when they think about sustainability,” said Amanda Nusz, SVP of corporate responsibility at Target, and president of the Target Foundation. “We know that the only way to make that possible is by putting both people and the planet at the center of our efforts as we co-create with our guests, our partners and the communities we serve.”

Co-creating a more equitable and regenerative future

Target says it is committed to co-creating solutions and strategies for creating a more equitable and regenerative future alongside partners, communities and other purpose-driven companies — and to continuous listening and improvement as it works to achieve its goals.

“Target’s new sustainability commitments can make a real impact. We at Unilever love seeing the goal of net-zero emissions, which aligns with ours,” said Fabian Garcia, president of Unilever North America. “Carbon reduction is needed to work toward a more sustainable world for all. Unilever and our purpose-driven brands look forward to partnering with Target to help drive our industry even further in improving the health of our planet.”

“Prosperity Now is excited about Target’s new sustainability initiative, and we look forward to continuing our partnership as they pursue ways to accelerate equity and opportunity building,” said Gary Cunningham, president and CEO of Prosperity Now — a nonprofit dedicated to ensuring a clear path to financial stability, wealth and prosperity for everyone in the US. “This work is closely aligned with our mission of building pathways for all people to prosper. We welcome Target’s renewed commitment to the pursuit of financial security for all and value their contributions to our own efforts to ensure that every family and individual has the opportunity to save, build wealth and thrive.”

To learn more about Target Forward and the retailer’s comprehensive goals, visit Target.com/targetforward.

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