With its roots in the cooperative sector in Ireland, Kerry Group has a proud record of community engagement and support. Since its foundation, the Group has contributed significant time and resources to initiatives and charitable causes in the regions where we operate and the philosophy of positive engagement with local communities continues to be a core value of the organisation.
Within local communities our primary areas of focus and support are as follows:
- Health, Hunger & Nutrition
- Community Development
- Education, Arts & Sport
- Sustainable Agriculture
Health & Hunger
As the world’s leading Taste and Nutrition company, Kerry Group understands the primary importance of nutrition across all life stages and need states. Our market and consumer research give us an understanding of different requirements across cultures and geographies and we recognise the challenges presented by hunger and poor nutrition. Improving nutritional values is at the heart of what we do and we welcome the call to action on hunger provided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, particularly on the achievement of agreed targets for child stunting.
Under-nutrition during the first 1000 days is a leading cause of child stunting. In Zambia, where more than one million children are impacted, Concern are working to alleviate child stunting through the award-winning ‘RAIN’ (Realigning Agriculture to Improve Nutrition) Project. Given the fit between the aims of this project and Kerry’s objectives on nutrition, we are proud to support their work. Read more about the RAIN project here.
The Group is also engaged in more direct efforts to alleviate hunger in the communities where we operate. In Kerry Foods, we have partnered with local charities in the UK & Ireland to help redistribute food which would otherwise have gone to waste. Through these partnerships we donated almost 27,500 cases of food to those in need in 2015.
Through its daily activities and community development work, Kerry Group seeks to foster enterprise, innovation and development. We promote learning opportunities for young people through work placement programmes at our major corporate centres. Our responsible sourcing practices look to support smallholder farmers and much of our corporate community development projects take place in rural areas, giving rise to local employment, supporting disadvantaged areas and promoting local enterprise. Examples include our support for Listowel Food Fair, which takes place in South West Ireland and promotes awareness of the quality food and beverage products made by local entrepreneurs. The Kerry Way Folklore & Heritage App was developed with support from Kerry Group and is a great example of a community enterprise aimed at enhancing tourism and economic development in the region.
Kerry Group and its employees around the world play a key role in supporting local communities. At Group level we provide ongoing financial support and management time for a range of initiatives that include the Children’s Medical and Research Foundation, the Hospice and our Hospitals.
However, our people are central to Kerry's efforts in this area. As individuals, Kerry Group employees come together all over the world to give back to their local communities. In Latin America, the ‘Human Ingredient’ programme harnesses the generosity and goodwill of colleagues in the region. In 2015, they contributed their time, skills and donated gifts to support local children in need. Similarly, in the US, the ‘Live United’ Campaign continues to engage employees in projects that have a meaningful and lasting impact on their communities, that includes food donations, redeveloping green spaces, community gardens and fundraising.
Education, Arts & Sport
Kerry sponsor a range of activities across the areas of Education, Arts and Sport. The Group provides funding for scholarships, local cultural and performance programmes and a range of sporting disciplines. In 2015, we continued our support for Siamsa Tíre’s National Folk Theatre of Ireland and ‘Listowel Writers Week - International Literary Festival’, including the prestigious ‘Kerry Group Award’ for Irish fiction. We contributed to the US Embassy’s ‘Creative Minds Series’ that aims to foster collaboration between young people in Ireland and the United States and in 2015, Kerry Group was the corporate sponsor of the Art Institute of Chicago’s inspiring exhibition, ‘Ireland: Crossroads of Art & Design 1690 – 1840’, which celebrates Ireland’s rich arts heritage. We are also the proud sponsors of numerous sporting activities including, Kerry GAA, the Kerry Group International ‘Rás Mumhan’ cycling event and the Children’s Community Games.
Sustainable agriculture is a vital component of both our sourcing and community programmes. Through our involvement with Concern’s RAIN project in Zambia, and our own sustainable sourcing commitments, we look to support farmers and help preserve vibrant and economically viable rural communities. Our milk suppliers involvement with the Sustainable Dairy Assurance Scheme (SDAS) and our Sustainable Vanilla Programme in Madagascar provide some examples of our work in these areas.