As part of its responsibility drive, WAY BEYOND GOOD, SIG has launched a new flagship project called Cartons for Good. This is the story so far.
Cartons for Good is a unique initiative designed to help save surplus food to feed schoolchildren. The project is set to run in Bangladesh. This is where SIG will use its technology and expertise to reduce local food waste, support farmer livelihoods, and promote children’s nutrition and education.
The idea first came about during SIG’s Global Leadership Meeting 2016. Here we looked at ways to make a positive impact on society and the environment. During a series of workshops, an ambitious idea was born: to use our expertise and experience in carton packs and filling technology to preserve surplus food.
To realise this ambition, we looked to the sustainability organisation Forum for the Future. It helped us find a country where the project would be logistically possible and have a big impact. Bangladesh ticked all the boxes. Here, nearly 20% of the population is undernourished and 56% of children are underweight. Yet despite this, food is still needlessly wasted.
Making a real impact
SIG sent out a team to Bangladesh to see the situation first-hand. Every year at harvest-time, farmers produce more food than they need or can sell. With no way to preserve surplus crops, the food rots and farmers have to throw it away. At the same time, many children drop out of school. That’s because they need to work to feed themselves and their families, stifling the potential of thousands of children.
To make Cartons for Good work, we talked to everyone from farmers to community leaders. We also learnt a great deal by talking to BRAC, an international development organisation, as well as our local SIG colleagues. And we even created a unique filling solution – one that could be downsized and mobile enough to travel to remote rural locations.
In the Cartons for Good project, farmers can bring their excess crops to be turned into meals that are packaged in SIG carton packs. The farmers will be paid for their produce, providing them with much-needed income. The food packs will then be taken to local schools, which will use the food to provide a healthy, hot meal for children every day.
Want to see how the Cartons for Good project is progressing? Follow the story here to gain regular updates and insights.