April 13 2020
Statement from Upfield Group CEO David Haines
We’re currently in the midst of a global challenge that requires the best of all of us; to be innovative in how we work together and to be thoughtful in how we keep each other safe. There has never been a time when kindness, patience and care has mattered so much; to our families, our neighbours, our communities and above all, to our planet.
My thoughts are with those who are battling the virus as well as those who are quarantined at home. We are most indebted to those whose lives are currently dedicated to helping others – thank you.
As everyone’s daily life is feeling the effects of COVID-19, I want you to know how seriously Upfield takes our responsibility to produce and supply our food products to consumers around the world. We are committed to doing everything we can, with our partners, to ensure our products make it to you when you need them.
I want to tell you about the specific things we are doing as a company during these challenging times. As always, we are driven by our purpose that is to not only serve the needs of our consumers, but to do what is right for our Associates, our communities, our planet and our business.
Firstly at home; we are a team of over 4,000 Associates worldwide, and together we have developed necessary and stringent measures to ensure that all of them, and especially those who work in our production facilities, are able to continue to safely perform their critical duties. All Associates who can work remotely are now doing so in order to minimise the risk of contracting and / or spreading the virus. Across our factories, we have introduced a staggered shift system, social distancing, installed additional handwashing and sanitisation stations and implemented mandatory temperature checks. Today our factories are all functioning at capacity. We thank our factory Associates and their families for the care they are taking.
We continue to work closely with our customers and suppliers to maintain a sustainable and reliable supply chain. We thank them for their partnership, collaboration and forward planning. We’ve also undertaken extensive scenario preparation to maintain business continuity and ensure that our products get to shelves. Working with retail partners, I encourage everybody to shop responsibly so that those most vulnerable can get the critical supplies they need.
At the community level we are working with local food banks who are in need at this time, and we will be supporting local hospitals with additional food supplies to meet the growing need of health workers and their patients.
To our extended Upfield community – our consumers, customers, suppliers, distributors, and farmers; I want to thank you for your continued partnership and for helping us navigate our way through this global crisis. We are all in this together and together we will deliver. Be kind and take care, thank you.