2020 was a tumultuous year for all of us. Challenges we have been facing for a long time, such as the climate crisis, inequality, discrimination, loss of trust, and social injustice, have only intensified. The COVID-19 pandemic plunged the world into ongoing trauma. Uncertainty, event chasing event, quarantine alongside vaccines, fake news and lies alongside science and knowledge, exploitation alongside solidarity, despair alongside hope.
The past year has sharpened our understanding of just how pivotal our role in the lives of people is. The role of food is to bring joy and confidence. The power of food and drink lies in its capacity to form a bridge between people. The meaning and importance of healthy eating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle for physical, mental and resilience of us all.
Life during the ongoing crisis crystalized the deep meaning of sustainability. The COVID-19 pandemic serves as a test for businesses, governments, communities and people around the world. It has completely changed the way we work, buy, learn, and manage relationships and collaborations between people and groups.
The values and vision that have accompanied Strauss since its inception have guided our management and team from the onset. We pledged not to let the mask cover our eyes. At the start of the crisis, we designed an impact policy that correlates to the “new normal”. We decided to continue pushing for improvement in sustainability. Alongside this, we realized that this is the time to increase and deepen our investment in the communities in which we operate and support the food eco-system to maintain its resilience. First and foremost, we focused our activities on our people, especially those at the forefront, who dedicated themselves every morning to a tremendous sense of purpose, maintaining business continuity and creating confidence for our consumers and suppliers.
During 2020, we led collaborations with large food banks and developed innovative ventures such as the ‘Doing Good, Together’ venture, for tens of thousands of families significantly affected by the crisis through our wide range of customizable products. We have created collaborations to promote ventures that promote inclusive employment, based on our understanding that the weakened populations in this pandemic have become even more weakened, and the only way to recover is by way of inclusive recovery. We have assisted our suppliers, farmers and manufacturers, with the understanding that we must strengthen the food ecosystem.
At the same time, we made sure to look beyond the mask.
We understood how important it is to produce a long-term channel that will allow us to strengthen our impact in creating a better future. We have refreshed our ethics infrastructure, built a long-term sustainability strategy and set ourselves ambitious goals in the field of mindful nutrition, sustainable value chain, water, environment and packaging, diversity, equity and inclusion, impact and many other issues.
We have deepened our investments in FoodTech and innovation with the understanding that the world must develop a stronger food system, and advanced technologies will help us to create better food through better industry. Food that will be tailored to the needs of diverse populations.
Sustainability is just one step in an endless journey, and we understand that our success as a company and the prosperity of the communities in which we operate go hand in hand. Successful companies must do more than produce profit. They must create value and improve the lives of those they influence. This is our vision. That’s what we do.
I feel fortunate to work alongside women and men who are so committed, driven by a common purpose, and understand the magnitude of our responsibility, and the value we at Strauss strive to create for the world. I want to thank our stakeholders who help push us forward all the time. You make us better.