Dogwood Alliance Delivers Up Sustainability at the YUM/KFC Shareholder’s Meeting
Environmental Group Calls on Company to Stop Stonewalling and Start Protecting Southern Forests and Communities; CEO Advises Dogwood Alliance to Meet with Chief Sustainability Officer
Louisville, KY – This morning, Dogwood Alliance staff and board members attended the YUM! shareholders meeting to call on the company to end the destruction of Southern forests for the company’s paper packaging. The message was loud and clear, “Our campaign will continue until your company changes!”
At this morning’s meeting, for the first time CEO David Novak advised the group to meet with Chief Sustainability Office, Roger McClendon. This may represent a turning point in the company’s engagement with Dogwood Alliance.
Two years ago, Dogwood Alliance launched a public campaign targeting KFC because the fast food giant buys its buckets and a bulk of its paper packaging from endangered coastal wetland forests in North and South Carolina. Over that period, KFC has continued to ignore concerns, refused to engage in substantive dialogue, and failed to adopt solutions.
KFC competitors have adopted company-wide policies setting goals for increasing the recycled content in fast food packaging, eliminating packaging that originates from the most egregious logging practices and purchasing packaging from suppliers that meet the high environmental standards of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification.
“Wetland forests along the Atlantic Coast are being decimated by destructive logging for KFC’s paper packaging. “It doesn’t have to be this way,” said Dr. Robert Cabin, a forest ecologist. ”With greater vigilance to its supply chain, the company can facilitate the protection rather than the destruction of our endangered forests and wetlands
“Dogwood Alliance has worked with numerous Fortune 500 companies to increase the use of recycled paper and eliminate paper coming from destructive logging in ecologically sensitive forests. Most companies realize it is important to enter into constructive dialogue to address concerns” said Scot Quaranda, Campaign Director at Dogwood Alliance, “Unfortunately, KFC has put up roadblocks at every turn and instead continues to buy paper packaging that is destroying critical wetland forests in the Southern US.”
Rather than take action, the company chose to ignore the facts and instead publicly promote the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), a certification systems created by the paper industry which certifies destructive logging in endangered forests as “sustainable”.
Just last month, KFC used its influence to bar Dogwood Alliance, who had been invited and purchased a ticket, from attending the Sustainable Operations Summit in New York City, where YUM Chief Sustainability Officer, Roger McClendon spoke on a panel called “Environmental Strategy as Business Strategy.”
Gary Phillips, a Dogwood Alliance board member stated “The energy KFC is exerting to avoid addressing the issues is a waste of resources and the company is spinning its wheels when it comes to taking real steps towards sustainability. The public’s concerns are not going to just go away.”