Catering giant has committed to a wide range of initiatives to create meaningful impact

Sodexo is putting social responsibility behind its meals

Sodexo is putting social responsibility behind its meals

Sodexo has detailed the positive impact it has had through its three-year social value strategy.

In a newly published 2024 Social Impact Report, the catering giant explains what it has done since launching its Social Impact Pledge in 2021, which committed to improving the quality of life for its colleagues, society and the planet.

The report provides a comprehensive overview of the actions Sodexo has taken over the last three years to create meaningful impact, and aims to use data and case studies to show how it, its clients and suppliers, have addressed a variety of societal challenges.

It lists developments including:

  • Increasing average spend with SME/VCSE supply partners to 50 per cent, exceeding the 40 per cent target.
  • Providing over 1,000 hours of mentoring to supply partners and charities with diverse ownership.
  • Reducing supply chain emissions by 30 per cent since 2017.
  • Reducing foodservice greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 21 per cent by increasing sales of sustainable options.
  • Investing in the Starting Fresh programme to encourage even more businesses and Sodexo managers to employ 567 prison leavers within six weeks of release, and 701 within six months of leaving prison.
  • Donating over £1.1 million to charity partners and social enterprises, supporting 105 organisations through the Stop Hunger Foundation.
  • Graduating 643 apprentices by ensuring appropriate vacancies and job roles are considered for apprenticeships.
  • Gifting £2.28 million of apprenticeship levy to support small and not-for-profit organisations.
  • Co-founding the cross-industry BSA Modern Slavery Council, which now has 20-plus members collectively representing two billion employees.

Sodexo said it will announce the next phase of its social impact strategy in 2025, with commitments that focus on existing and emerging issues that align with the company’s responsibilities and priorities. That will mark Sodexo’s tenth year of publicly pledging its social impact commitments.

Sean Haley, CEO of Sodexo UK & Ireland, said: “The positive impact showcased in this report represents three years of my colleagues’ ambition and hard work – I find it both extraordinary and humbling.

“Sodexo has always been a purpose-led business, but since 2021 we have seen a real shift in how deeply ingrained and essential social impact has become – this is reflected in our day-to-day operations. I am confident that every contract we retain, or win is – in part at least – in recognition of the quantified and tangible positive social impact we deliver in partnership with our clients and suppliers.

“Our various commitments, such as accelerating the decarbonisation of our business to achieve our net-zero target sooner and recruiting more ex-offenders into our business, drives us to continue making progress.”