Sanderson Farms, Inc. 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report Reflects Successful Social and Environmental Sustainability Efforts
LAUREL, Miss – June 23, 2016 – Consumers are more attentive than ever before to the values and principles that guide the companies whose products they purchase. Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Sanderson Farms, is well aware of this, which is one reason he keeps his company focused on its unparalleled growth, quality products, responsiveness to customers’ needs, and a true sense of corporate responsibility. Sanderson Farms, Inc., recently released its “2015 Corporate Responsibility Report” highlighting the organization’s commitment to social and environmental responsibility.
“Our success is about much more than just becoming a bigger company and corporate profits,” said Sanderson. “We believe our success is best measured by meeting our responsibility to our people, our process and our products, as well as to our customers and shareholders.”
As an employer of more than 12,000 employees, and a corporate citizen in 16 different communities in five states, as well as a consumer of natural resources ranging from water to feed grain, Sanderson Farms’ stewardship and sustainability efforts focus on its people, the communities of which the company is a part and the environment. Accordingly, the Corporate Responsibility Report is intended to measure the company’s progress in all three areas.
Sanderson believes, and often says, that the company would only be as successful as the communities in which it operates. Through this philosophy, Sanderson has engrained a generous spirit into Sanderson Farms that continues today.
During fiscal 2015, Sanderson Farms donated over $1.1 million to charitable organizations, including more than $370,000 to the communities in which the company operates through the United Way. Sanderson Farms’ employees are generous in their commitment to the United Way, and the company matches dollar-for-dollar every donation they make.
Since 2012, Sanderson Farms has also donated nearly 1,000,000 pounds of poultry to charitable organizations in its surrounding communities. The Sanderson Farms Championship has generated more than $2.7 million in donations to Friends of Children’s Hospital, a fundraising organization supporting Mississippi’s only children’s hospital.
“In addition to being a leader in its industry, Sanderson Farms also aspires to be a leader within our communities,” stated Pic Billingsley, Director of Development and Engineering at Sanderson Farms. “When Sanderson Farms enters a community, we strive to make the community better in many ways, including providing jobs, raising the tax basis and preserving natural resources. Our primary goal is to leave the environment in the areas in which we operate better than when we found them.”
Establishing baseline values in 2008 for sustainable growth, Sanderson Farms tracks the daily usage of electricity, gas and water at each poultry complex. The 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report highlights the Company’s successful environmental efforts as measured by a reduction in electricity (21%), natural gas (39%) and water usage (42%).
According to the report, this year alone, the amount of electricity conserved by Sanderson Farms would power more than 8,537 houses for an entire year. The amount of natural gas conserved would fuel more than all 10 processing facilities for a year, and the amount of water conserved would fill more than 1,050 Olympic-sized swimming pools. Through its state-of-the-art waste water treatment facilities, the Company also recycled more than 5 billion gallons of water back into the environment.
The report also revealed several environmental achievement awards bestowed on Sanderson Farms. In 2011, 2013 and 2015, Sanderson Farms’ Moultrie, Georgia, processing facility was named an “Outstanding Operation” by the Georgia Association of Water Professionals for the facility’s industrial wastewater application system.
In 2015, Sanderson Farms’ contract poultry producer, Schoeneman Broiler Farm, was awarded USPOULTRY’S Family Farm Environmental Excellence Award for exemplary environmental stewardship by family farmers engaged in poultry production. Additionally, Sanderson Farms’ Manager of Environmental Services was awarded USPOULTRY’S 2015 Lamplighter Award for “sustained and exemplary service” to the poultry industry.
Sanderson Farms highlights the responsibility it feels toward its products through its commitment to providing customers and consumers with safe, wholesome and 100% Natural Chicken. Sanderson Farms’ chicken is minimally processed with no additives, artificial ingredients or preservatives. Consistent with industry standards and Federal law, all of its chickens are raised cage-free and never receive hormones or steroids.
Believing high-quality products begin with healthy chickens, Sanderson Farms operates its own feed mills to maintain control over what its chickens eat. Healthy chickens grow more efficiently, require less grain and fewer resources, leave a smaller carbon footprint and result in lower bacteria counts than do unhealthy chickens. Accordingly, the company and its veterinarians devote substantial time, effort and financial resources to maintaining flock health.
While the success of the communities in which the company operates is vital to the company’s success, its most important assets are its people.
While Sanderson Farms’ physical assets are among the most modern and well-maintained in the poultry industry, it is the company’s human resources that maintain the position as one of the most efficient and profitable companies in its industry. Their safety, health and happiness are considered in every decision made, every investment undertaken and every strategy pursued.
Sanderson Farms is a leader in the industry in employee training, compensation and benefits. Its health benefit plans are among the most comprehensive offered by any employer in any industry and the company pays for 75% of the cost for both employees and their families.
The Company’s Employee Stock Ownership Plan is funded 100% through company contributions. Additionally, Sanderson Farms generously matches employee contributions to the company’s 401(k) Plan.
Through training, safety audits and comprehensive safety programs, the company’s safety record continues to improve at all of its plants. Sanderson Farms holds itself to aggressive safety targets knowing that nothing is more important than the safety and wellbeing of its employees.
Through growing its product by providing healthy chickens and focusing on the wellbeing of its employees, as well as reducing its environmental footprint, Sanderson Farms is able to grow as a company, provide jobs and increase the tax basis of the communities in which it operates. As stated by Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., “Growing responsibly through an unwavering dedication to our people, our process and our products is what Sanderson Farms stands for –our values.”
About Sanderson Farms
Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM), based in Laurel, Miss., is one of the nation’s leading food corporations. Incorporated in 1955, with the initial public offering presented in 1987, Sanderson Fars, Inc. is a fully integrated poultry processing company engaged in the production, processing, marketing and distribution of fresh and frozen chicken and other prepared food items.