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Nespresso Launches its 2020 Sustainability Ambition and the Nespresso Sustainable Development Fund

CHF 500 million overall investment, with CHF 15 million to develop AAA coffee growing programs in Africa

MILAN, August 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

On the occasion of the second annual meeting of the Nespresso Sustainability Advisory Board, Jean-Marc Duvoisin, CEO of Nestlé Nespresso, set out an ambitious strategy to accelerate the company's sustainability focus and introduce several major new initiatives that will create significant benefits for the business, society and the environment. The new sustainability program entitled The Positive Cup will be based on an investment of CHF 500 million over the next six years. Part of this investment will be used to establish a new Sustainable Development Fund, which will play a key role in channelling resources into specific projects. The new strategy is supported by members of the Nespresso Sustainability Advisory Board (NSAB) including the Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade International, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and brand ambassador George Clooney.

     (Photo: )

The Positive Cup strategy, based on the Nestlé approach to Creating Shared Value, builds upon the significant steps that the company has already taken over the last five years* to improve farmer welfare and drive environmental sustainability in coffee sourcing and consumption. It sets out concrete steps that the company will implement to achieve its sustainability goals by 2020. The fund will be used to finance the range of programs, which form part of the strategy as well as to attract additional external partner funding.

"Our sustainability approach has always been designed to do more than simply minimise impacts," said Mr. Duvoisin. "The development of even more innovative programs with our partners demonstrates our commitment to creating shared value and generating positive impacts for all stakeholders across the entire value chain. This CHF 500 million investment significantly builds on our current sustainability investment to ensure the long-term success of our business model. This includes securing access to the one to two percent of coffee produced in the world that meets our strict quality and taste standards through our AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program. This approach also allows us to innovate thanks to the direct relationships we build with farmers. The Sustainable Development Fund will allow us to allocate new funding to groundbreaking programs such as the reviving of the coffee sector in South Sudan."

The Positive Cup Commitments 

The Positive Cup program incorporates ambitious goals in the areas of coffee sourcing and social welfare; aluminium sourcing, use and disposal; and resilience to climate change. Specifically, by 2020 Nespresso commits to:

Coffee - 100% sustainably sourced coffee 

  • Source 100% of its permanent range of Grand Cru coffees sustainably through the Nespresso AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program by significantly expanding the AAA Program in Ethiopia, Kenya and South Sudan, and investing over CHF 15 million in these countries over six years.
  • Assist farmers to achieve high certification standards (in water management, biodiversity and fair treatment of workers, for example) through our long-term partner Rainforest Alliance (since 2003) and Fairtrade.
  • Pursue innovative solutions to farmer welfare, including the expansion of the AAA Farmer Future Program initially through a retirement fund for farmers in Colombia.

Aluminium- 100% sustainably managed aluminium 

  • Expand the capacity to collect used aluminium capsules to 100% wherever the company does business and increase recycling rates.
  • Recycle Nespresso capsules collected by the company into new Nespresso capsules each time it makes sense environmentally**.
  • Source 100% of virgin aluminium capsule material compliant with the new Aluminium Stewardship Initiative standard, being developed within a multi-stakeholder programme led by the IUCN.

Climate - 100% carbon insetting***

  • Further reduce by 10% the carbon footprint of the company.

In addition, become 100% carbon neutral. Nespresso plans to inset its residual operational carbon footprint and increase farm climate resilience through an extensive agroforestry programme.

"Our business model enables us to be involved in every stage of coffee sourcing, production and sale. It allows us to maintain particularly close relationships and have a direct dialogue with our consumers and Club Members," said Mr. Duvoisin. "As a result, we have a unique opportunity to strongly engage with our Club Members to achieve our Positive Cup commitments, in particular as it relates to capsule recycling. Nespresso cannot achieve its objectives alone. We call on our Club Members to actively take part in furthering our recycling efforts."

Nespresso Sustainability Advisory Board - Driving innovation and collaboration 

The second annual NSAB brought together long-time Nespresso brand ambassador George Clooney, partners including The Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade International, TechnoServe, IUCN and Pur Projet and Nespresso management, to help the company enhance its long term sustainability strategy and to serve as a base for partnership on sustainability initiatives.

The collaborative platform has played an important role in shaping the company's approach and informing the development of innovative and impactful programs.

"We are proud of our long-standing relationship with Nespresso," said Tensie Whelan, President of the Rainforest Alliance. "This cutting edge approach will help us further build on the real impact we together are having on the ground in farming communities, driving economic and environmental benefits for over 60,000 farmers who are part of the AAA Program. The Nespresso commitment to increase the amount of Rainforest Alliance certified coffee to 50% is an important next step in our collaboration and will provide further assurances to consumers that the coffee they are buying is having a positive impact."

"The AAA Farmer Future Program, coming out of the Nespresso and Fairtrade commitment to work together, will bring measurable benefits to farmers and their families in Caldas, Colombia," said Harriet Lamb, CEO of Fairtrade International. "Farmers selling to Nespresso now have the option to invest Fairtrade Premiums in this first-of-its-kind retirement fund. It's good news for the farmers - whose average age is over 50 and who face an uncertain future - and one way to help protect the future of coffee in Colombia by offering better, long-term prospects."  

"The approach that Nespresso is taking is completely aligned with the vision we have to integrate social and environmental innovations into the heart of business," said Tristan Lecomte, President of Pur Projet. "We believe that investing in reforestation of agricultural regions will not only restore natural ecosystems but ultimately also improve coffee quality and productivity and provide better returns for farmers."

"We are pleased to be able to work with Nespresso to foster greater sustainability and transparency throughout the aluminium value chain," said Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Director General of IUCN. "The forward looking approach that the company is taking to further expand its recycling solutions and encourage consumers to recycle will be greatly strengthened by the commitment to source 100% of virgin aluminium capsule material compliant with the new Aluminium Stewardship Initiative standard. The company has played a leading role in initiating the new standard and continues to be a strong proponent for sustainable aluminium use."

*Nespresso 2013 sustainability commitments 

Nespresso has met and surpassed its 2013 sustainability commitments, set out in 2009. The company has exceeded its goal of sourcing 80% of its coffee from its AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program (84%), putting in place the capacity to recycle over 75% of Nespresso capsules sold worldwide (80%) and reducing the carbon footprint of a cup of Nespresso coffee by 20% (-20.7%).

** For example, in UK, France, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Austria and Italy.

*** Definition of insetting: unlike "offsetting" traditional carbon compensation where compensation takes place in a different location using uncorrelated actors and technical activities, "insetting" integrates socio-environmental commitments at the heart of the companies' business activities and networks.

More information: 


Backgrounders on AAA Program in Africa, AAA Farmer Future Program and agroforestry available here:

Nespresso Sustainability Advisory Board members and description:

About Nestlé Nespresso SA 

Nestlé Nespresso SA is the pioneer and reference for highest-quality portioned premium coffee. Headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, Nespresso operates in almost 60 countries and has more than 9,500 employees. In 2013, it operated a global retail network of over 320 exclusive boutiques. For more information, visit the Nestlé Nespresso corporate website:


Diane Duperret
Corporate PR Manager, Nestlé Nespresso SA    
[email protected]
T: +41-21-796-92-89

SOURCE Nespresso

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