Bidcorp strives to be a good corporate citizen. We are a decentralised business operating in numerous jurisdictions. Local requirements, norms and laws differ.
Bidcorp's social and ethics committee monitors performance in good corporate citizenship, social and economic development, matters relating to health, safety and the environment, consumer relations, anti-corruption efforts and employment practice.
A key enabling protocol is Bidcorp's management representation letter (MRL), which is signed off quarterly by every business, confirming that each company meets Bidcorp standards.
This process recommits each operation to compliance with Bidcorp's code of ethics while reaffirming that the business does not engage in price-fixing and corruption. It also confirms that the business honours all relevant statutes.
The MRL also reaffirmed Bidcorp's zero tolerance of any form of child labour as the group fully endorses the principles of the UN Global Compact and supports all efforts to combat modern slavery. Group companies not only ban child labour practices in their own operations, but take steps to ensure suppliers do so as well.
Another protocol for building group momentum is the group-wide risk surveys.
In the review period, two were conducted, one into fire safety, the other into food safety.
The fire safety study gathered information on fire risk identification and mitigation, fire detection and fire-fighting equipment, evacuation procedures and each business's state of readiness.
Food safety research considered food safety policy, systems for monitoring changing regulations, food safety management systems, the regularity of in-house safety audits, supplier relationships and risk mitigation.
These give operational companies a framework for future reference while drawing attention to areas requiring renewed focus.
Workplace discrimination of any kind impacts productivity and disengages staff. Bidcorp is committed to creating a workplace environment that is equitable to all, offering equal opportunity to all. Female representation in senior staff grades can vary significantly across the group and development of women into senior positions remains a priority. In 2018, businesses in the UK and Australia conducted internal surveys to establish a baseline as a first step in achieving consistent improvement.
One point of focus was pay disparity. Encouragingly, the UK study showed that in several categories women received higher pay and bonuses than men while at some companies more women qualified for bonuses than men.
A top-down approach was adopted through the approval of the Bidcorp diversity policy, and is a standard we expect all in our group to embrace.
Bidcorp businesses are rooted in the communities they serve. The bond is fostered by continual engagement and support for worthy causes. Each business decides its social investment priorities, though support for education is a recurring theme.
Substantial social contributions are made at all group businesses, some sourced from each company's social investment budget while other contributions come from Bidcorp people themselves.
South Africa experienced the world's worst ever listeriosis outbreak, reporting 183 deaths and more than a thousand confirmed infections.
Bidcorp responded immediately with a national recall of all potentially implicated products, in conjunction with the affected local suppliers. Utilising existing food safety management system procedures to effectively manage this crisis.
The team set-up a website communication portal and emailed customers updates to inform and educate them regarding the implications of the crisis. Through collaboration with industry specialists, academics and food safety service providers Bidfood SA facilitated "Food Safety and Listeriosis Update" seminars nationally in eight different locations.
These seminars were provided at no cost with the primary focus of educating the foodservice industry stakeholders on the correct information pertaining to this crisis. An understanding of the role players in the supply chain, critical in preventing the perpetration of food safety hazards in the kitchen environment was shared.
We remain vigilant in our efforts to ensure the highest standards of food safety are maintained, both in our own environments and those of our suppliers, customers and wider community.
Regretfully a fatality was reported in the current period. This incident serves as a reminder that even when rigorous health and safety measures are in place, it is imperative to ensure all guidelines are strictly observed.
We extend our deepest sympathies to the family.
Bidcorp, as a JSE listed company, is committed to transformation and the building of a sustainable South African economy.
Though the board holds ultimate transformation responsibility, the social and ethics committee drives legislative compliance, implemented independently through each business in South Africa.
B-BBEE criteria are periodically adjusted, these revised codes make it imperative that work is stepped-up to achieve. The legislation aims to encourage economic transformation, the development of black-owned businesses, the employment of black people and the nurturing of a new wave of senior black executives.
In 2018, the board sent an unmistakable signal that diversity is a strategic imperative through the roll out of a board policy on the promotion of gender and race diversity. Within it, the policy states “preferred consideration” shall be given to black and/or female directors when places on the board are filled, giving due regard to skills and experience.
Revised codes give strong weighting to black supplier development through preferential procurement. People development is supported by substantial training investment and in 2018 a growing number of black employee candidates were prepared for higher responsibility. These initiatives have significantly contributed to our succession planning efforts and material improvements in the workforce diversity.
Socio-economic development remain an area that the businesses score maximum points, with their efforts in these areas far exceeding the expectations of the B-BBEE scorecard.
In 2018, our sustained transformational efforts have been recognised in the material improvements of the revised ratings.
BF has maintained a level 4 rating, through continued succession planning efforts, coupled with extensive skills development activities. The preferential procurement score remains the biggest challenge. Great gains were recorded in the B-BBEE levels of some key suppliers, largely eroded however by negative movement on other supplier scorecards.
CFG is pleased with the improved level 6 rating, reflective of the exceptional efforts invested. CFG has more than doubled its score on management and control, as well as achieving in the skills development rating. CFG’s ESD score has markedly improved, resulting in the much-improved overall rating.
Following the Puratos JV, CP has moved to a December financial year-end, realigning the rating period accordingly. The 2018 rating will follow post year-end.
Bidcorp group has achieved an improved level 4 rating. This is largely due to CFG’s material score improvements, drawing the consolidated rating up.
Bidcorp’s goal remains the implementation of long-term programmes and commercially impactful solutions beneficial to our stakeholders, and well-positioned for continued business growth.
Planet Mark™ Award
The Planet Mark organisation, established five years ago, is committed to accelerating the progress of sustainability efforts through empowering individuals within organisations to do their bit for climate change. The 5th annual awards noted a remarkable number of entries from across many industries. Thirty-eight shortlisted finalists were whittled down by the judges to 12, awarded across four categories – Engage, Measure, Communicate and Overall.
Bidfood UK proudly took two of the top awards – a tribute to the outstanding efforts of this team.
The first award was the “Sustainability Report Award”. Judges were looking for an engaging, in-depth report addressing the outcomes of stakeholder engagement. This award recognises the world-class sustainability report published by Bidfood UK, showcasing some fantastic outcomes achieved by the business, reported against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).
Bidfood UK’s second award is in recognition for the significant impact made by the team in giving back to their communities, the “Community Engagement Award”.
Crucial in achieving this award is employee engagement and the business’ reputation as a great local employer. The Bidfood entry featured the work achieved by their 90 sustainability coordinators across the UK, employees who voluntary take on this role, on top of their day-to-day responsibilities. Together they were responsible for a number of community initiatives from “Pollination Awareness” to “Plastic Free” campaigns, donations of freezer suits to the homeless and meals to “Fareshare” and “Holiday Hunger”, as well as launching the “National Volunteers’ Week”. The business contributed over 6 000 hours to supporting its local communities and raised more than £0,2 million.
Congratulations to our Bidfood UK team! Bidcorp applauds you!