United Natural Foods Launches Climate Action Partnership to Encourage Suppliers to Set Validated Climate Goals

April 20, 2023

More than 40 suppliers commit to UNFI's initial Climate Action Partnership outreach

Climate Action Partnership builds on UNFI’s Climate Action Hub, furthering the company’s commitment to a collaborative approach to climate action across its full value chain

United Natural Foods, Inc., (NYSE: UNFI) (“UNFI”), the largest publicly-traded grocery wholesaler and distributor in the U.S., today announced the launch of its Climate Action Partnership to encourage UNFI’s suppliers to make credible climate commitments. The program builds on UNFI’s Climate Action Hub, which was developed in partnership with the Climate Collaborative, a nonprofit organization with a mission to catalyze bold climate action within the grocery industry, and offers UNFI suppliers a variety of tools and resources to innovate and scale climate solutions across the food system.

UNFI already has over 40 suppliers who have committed to the Climate Action Partnership, including Gaia Herbs, where farmers work on certified fields using the latest regenerative organic planting and cultivation methods to produce over three million individual plants each year. Photo courtesy of Gaia Herbs.

UNFI already has over 40 suppliers who have committed to the Climate Action Partnership, including Gaia Herbs, where farmers work on certified fields using the latest regenerative organic planting and cultivation methods to produce over three million individual plants each year. Photo courtesy of Gaia Herbs.

The Climate Action Partnership is one of the key pillars of UNFI’s Better for All strategy and is aligned with its validated science-based emissions reduction targets covering the organization’s operations and value chain. Through its initial outreach efforts, UNFI’s Climate Action Partnership has already confirmed more than 40 participants, including Conagra, Bob’s Red Mill, Dr. Bronner’s, Gaia Herbs, Danone, Lundberg Family Farm, and more. To become a Climate Action Partner, suppliers must make a credible climate commitment through approved third-party organizations, including the Climate Collaborative, Climate Neutral, The Climate Pledge, the Science Based Targets initiative, or the SME Climate Hub, which have established requirements around transparency and reporting and prioritize an emissions-reduction approach.

“As one of the country’s largest wholesalers, we understand the leadership role we can play in reducing climate impact across our value chain and the opportunity we have to facilitate collective problem solving on the most critical climate challenges,” said Alisha Real, UNFI’s Vice President of ESG & Social Impact. “We can’t do it alone however, and the launch of the Climate Action Partnership is an important next step to supporting our suppliers along their respective climate journeys and ultimately, supporting UNFI on our own journey to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

“By encouraging our suppliers to set climate goals, we are also making it easier for our customers to choose products that take action on climate,” continued Real. “It’s a win-win for all, and a collective step forward to addressing some of today’s most urgent issues.”

To learn how to become a Climate Action Partner, please visit https://discover.unfi.com/climate-partner/.

About UNFI

UNFI is North America's premier grocery wholesaler delivering the widest variety of fresh, branded, and owned brand products to more than 30,000 locations throughout North America, including natural product superstores, independent retailers, conventional supermarket chains, ecommerce providers, and food service customers. UNFI also provides a broad range of value-added services and segmented marketing expertise, including proprietary technology, data, market insights, and shelf management to help customers and suppliers build their businesses and brands. As the largest full-service grocery partner in North America, UNFI is committed to building a food system that is better for all and is uniquely positioned to deliver great food, more choices, and fresh thinking to customers. To learn more about how UNFI is Fueling the Future of Food, visit www.unfi.com.

About Climate Collaborative

The Climate Collaborative is a nonprofit organization with a mission to catalyze bold climate action within the grocery industry, amplify the voice of business, and promote sound policy to reverse climate change. The organization removes barriers to climate action for companies through free education, policy opportunities, and a Commitment Program that provides high-impact pathways for climate engagement. Since the organization’s founding in 2017, it has catalyzed and tracked the public climate commitments from more than 760 companies. Beyond the Commitment Program, the Climate Collaborative currently works with thousands of brands, distributors, retailers, and associations to accelerate meaningful and just climate action and advocacy throughout the food system. To learn more about the Climate Collaborative, visit: climatecollaborative.com

For Investors:
Kristyn Farahmand
401-213-2160
kristyn.farahmand@unfi.com
-or-
Steve Bloomquist
952-828-4144
steve.j.bloomquist@unfi.com

For Media:
Jeff Swanson
952-903-1645
Jeffrey.s.swanson@unfi.com

Source: United Natural Foods, Inc.
Multimedia Files:
UNFI already has over 40 suppliers who have committed to the Climate Action Partnership, including Gaia Herbs, where farmers work on certified fields using the latest regenerative organic planting and cultivation methods to produce over three million individual plants each year. Photo courtesy of Gaia Herbs.
UNFI already has over 40 suppliers who have committed to the Climate Action Partnership, including Gaia Herbs, where farmers work on certified fields using the latest regenerative organic planting and cultivation methods to produce over three million individual plants each year. Photo courtesy of Gaia Herbs.