Molson Coors is an alcoholic beverage company known primarily for its beer portfolio, but also offers cocktails, wine and cider. The company was founded in 1786 in Mississippi, and today it operates through two main divisions: Molson Coors America and Molson Coors Europe. The company's presence has expanded due to several acquisitions in recent years, including Pardubický Pivovar (Croatia), Hop Stuff Brewery (UK) and Mt. Shivalik Brewery (India).
The company ranks 32nd in the food and beverage processors segment and amongst the top performers in the alcoholic beverage industry. The company outperforms its peers in the environmental measurement area, with leading practices on three topics. It has set science-based targets for greenhouse gas emissions that are aligned with a 1.5-degree trajectory and is disclosing against it. The company also leads its peers regarding water use, where it has a strong commitment which includes water stress and supplier engagement. However, the company still lags behind in the nutrition and social inclusion areas, where it is encouraged to set commitments, which include time-bound targets.
Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions The company has set a goal to lower its absolute emissions by 50 percent within its own operations by 2025. This reduction target is consistent with a 1.5-degree trajectory and has been approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative. The company is working towards this target by improving its risk management mitigation plans and updating its operations, for example by turning to renewable energies and cleaner fuel options. Molson Coors has disclosed achieving a 24 percent reduction by the end of 2020.
Plastic use and packaging waste Molson Coors commits to 100 percent of its packaging being reusable, recyclable, or compostable and to having 30 percent of its packaging for customer-facing plastic made from recycled content by 2025. The company has also disclosed its progress and has achieved 99.3 percent on its first target across its 17 largest breweries. While the company is leading the way in this topic, it can further strengthen its performance by working with its supply chain to reduce plastic use and packaging waste.
Sustainable development strategy Based on a materiality assessment, that is regularly updated, the company has identified the elements included in its sustainable development strategy, called Our Imprint. This process was carried out by monitoring global trends, along with interviews with experts and leaders, as well as a stakeholder assessment. While the company has a strategy which includes targets across topics in the environment and social dimension, the company has an opportunity to also include nutrition topics and by setting targets in this regard.
Governance and accountability for sustainable development The company’s responsibility for its sustainable development strategy lies in its board of directors, which also reviews performance against its goals. Furthermore, the company also set up a Sustainability Leadership Council, through which it includes business unit leaders to weight in the strategic decisions. As an outcome of this, the company has also set sub-committees to address specific sustainable development topics. The company has also aligned its CEO remuneration to ESG metrics and has an opportunity to also apply this to its board of directors.
Stakeholder engagement The company does not disclose stakeholder engagement activities, including how it selects the stakeholders, nor an overview of the topics discussed or their outcomes.
Scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions Molson Coors set a reduction target for its scope 3 emissions, to achieve a 20% reduction throughout its value chain towards 2025. The company reports it achieved 22.5% reductions by the end of 2020. While the company discloses having a scope 3 science-based target aligned with 1.5-degree trajectory, this target has not yet been approved.
Water use The company has targets to reduce its water use in its own operations and throughout its supply chain, by measuring the intensity of water used per unit of beer produced. Molson Coors has set a target towards 2025 to improve water efficiency in its breweries and to achieve a 2.8 hl/hl of water-to-beer ratio. Furthermore, the company has assessed its dependency on water-stressed areas across it supply chain but is encouraged to disclose evidence on how it engages with suppliers to establish programs in such areas.
Food loss and waste The company has a zero-waste to landfill target towards 2025, in which it includes food-related waste, like spent grains and yeast from its production process. The company also discloses using spent grains to create animal feed for local farms, and spent yeast being used to create spreads for human consumption. While the company is disclosing against its zero-waste target, it could further improve its food loss and waste activities by disclosing quantitative data and by setting a specific target.
Availability of healthy foods While the company discloses that it introduces reformulated products by expanding its portfolio of low-and-no-alcohol options as well as low-sugar, it has an opportunity to disclose quantitative evidence of its reformulation activities to reduce the level of alcohol and added sugar in its products.
Clear and transparent labelling Molson Coors commits to disclose nutritional information, as well as alcohol serving facts, on a 100 percent of their products. In the United States and European Union markets in almost meets this target. Furthermore, the company has joined voluntary efforts to include symbols and warnings on its labels around responsible drinking. The company has an opportunity to disclose quantitative information regarding other types of packaging, such as front-of-pack or secondary packaging, as well as to continuing working towards achieving 80 percent of markets, or 98 percent of its portfolio, across all locations.
Responsible marketing While the company has a commitment to market its products responsibly, particularly regarding underage drinking, it has an opportunity to disclose evidence of activities promoting healthy foods.
Child labour While the company commits to prohibiting child labour in its own operations and requires its suppliers to adhere to the same standard, it has an opportunity to disclose a policy requiring its suppliers to have an age-verification system in place.
Forced labour While the company commits to prohibiting forced labour in its own operations and supply chain, it has an opportunity to disclose a requirement that prohibits its suppliers from retaining workers’ personal documents or restricting workers’ freedom of movement.
Living wage The company does not disclose that it pays its workers a living wage or requires its suppliers to do the same. Neither has it set targets to do so in the future.
Farmer and fisher productivity and resilience The company does not disclose a commitment or examples of activities to support the resilience, productivity and access to markets for farmers, fishers and/or small-scale producers in its supply chain.
Core social indicators
The core social indicators are part of the social inclusion measurement area. These indicators assess societal expectations of business conduct that companies should meet if they aspire to be part of a system transformation that leaves no one behind.
Molson Coors provides grievance mechanisms for both workers and third parties and commits to respect the human rights of workers in its operations and supply chain. However, the company does not provide evidence of a human rights due diligence process or of substantial engagement with affected and potentially affected stakeholders.
Molson Coors has publicly committed to promoting and preserving the health and safety of its own employees and those in its supply chain. It also respects workers’ right to collective bargaining and gender equality. Nonetheless, not enough key metrics were disclosed, and no policy or commitments were found regarding living wages, working hours or diversity.
Molson Coors discloses a publicly available policy on the subject of data protection, along with commitments regarding responsible tax practices and anti-corruption and anti-bribery practices. However, the company could improve its score by further disclosing metrics on tax practices. No public global statement protecting personal data or a commitment regarding lobbying and political engagement could be found.