Message from Top Management
Message from Top Management
We will continue to exercise leadership in environmental management and
contribute to Japan becoming a “leading environmental nation”
TCFD scenario analysis, which we began disclosing in 2018,we found that climate change will have a significant impact on agricultural products and water that are important for us,and that global warming will lead to an increase in infectious diseases, heat stroke, etc. The spread of dengue fever is particularly concerning. The northernmost habitat of the Aedes albopictus, a mosquito that carries the disease, was Tochigi Prefecture around 1948, but now it has moved north and lives in Aomori Prefecture as a result of global warming.The Kirin Group has conducted Foundation Research in Southeast Asia for many years, and in September 2021, a joint clinical study with the University of Malaya in Malaysia confirmed the efficacy of Lactococcus lactis (LC) Plasma in treating dengue fever symptoms. We work with universities and other research institutions in Japan and overseas on joint research concerning the effects of various tropical infectious diseases, intending to contribute as a measure of climate change adaptation.
In customer surveys that the company conducted, customers’ health awareness was most heightened in relation to their “interest in immunity,” amid the spread of COVID-19. We believe that responding to these social demands in the Kirin Group's Health Science business will lead to the advancement of CSV that balances social and economic value. ESG themes are now expanding from climate change to natural capital that provides ecosystem services to people and businesses. The various effects of Lactococcus lactis (LC) Plasma are a perfect example of ecosystem services. In 2013, we formulated our “Action Plan for the Sustainable Use of Biological Resources.” Since then,we have supported the acquisition of sustainable farming certification by tea farms in Sri Lanka and promoted the use of FSC®-certified paper for paper containers. We intend to further meet the expectations of society and gain people’s recognition of our ESG management in this area.
One of the Kirin Group's measures to mitigate climate change is to set ambitious GHG emissions reduction targets, which are approved as science-based by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). We also participated in the Corporate Engagement Program held by the Science Based Targets Network and the Forum of the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) and commenced actions, so that we will be able to set science-based targets related to natural capital and disclose them appropriately in the near future.In 2019, the Kirin Group declared that we would “become a global leader in CSV.” By solving a variety of social issues, including health issues such as infectious diseases, community issues, and environmental issues such as climate change and natural capital or ecosystem service depletion, which have a significant impact on these health and community issues, and thereby turning risks into growth opportunities, we will create new markets and value, and link these efforts to sustainable growth. We aim to make our corporate slogan, "Joy brings us together," a reality by creating a "new joy in food and wellbeing,"to ensure that people around the world can enjoy mental and physical health and live surrounded by plentiful nature.
Message from the Officer in Charge of CSV Strategy
Our R&D and engineering capabilities create a positive impact.
Kirin's brewing philosophy of “Reverence for Life” lies behind the most important message of the “Kirin Group’s Environmental Vision 2050,” which we announced in 2020, “creating a plentiful world through positive impacts.” Malt, hops, and water are all blessings from nature, and yeast, which breaks down the sugar in wort into alcohol and carbonic acid and determines the flavor of beer, is also a microorganism. The idea is that in order to produce great-tasting beer, we need to continue to work directly with “life” and study the life sciences. The idea of “Reverence for Life” is based on the teachings of respect for the diversity of humanity and the natural environment of Dr. Albert Schweitzer, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1952, namely his idea that, “I am life that wills to live, in the midst of life that wills to live.”
“Life” depends on nature, which in turn on “place.” The idea of terroir is important for wine. The specific characteristics of the land that produces grapes is an important factor in determining the taste of wine. People use the idea of terroir not only for wine, but also for tea and coffee.
In Kirin Gogo-no-Kocha, we make the most of the specific characteristics of Sri Lankan tea leaves, and hops also have different characteristics depending on where they are produced. If we damage the natural capital of a particular place that imparts unique characteristics to agricultural products, substituting ingredients will not work.
The issue of climate change has a major impact on biological and water resources, which depend on location. GHGs are a global issue that results in global warming no matter where they are emitted, and it is agricultural products and water resources, which depend on the local environment, that suffer damage from this issue. In our initiatives, we keep in mind the fact that climate change and natural capital are strongly related to each other, and through TCFD scenario analysis, we have gained a deeper understanding of this relationship.
At tea farms in Sri Lanka, we teach farmers to plant grasses that crawl the ground to protect the ecosystem and prevent the loss of fertile soil. This also prevents landslides caused by frequent heavy rain as a result of climate change. In Australia, where water stress is high, we have introduced advanced water treatment equipment, while in Japan, where water stress is relatively low, we are responding to these issues with ingenious methods, such as cascading water in place of equipment that consumes energy. We are promoting the use of FSC-certified paper to ensure that our paper containers do not destroy the precious forests that absorb GHGs, and we are also focusing on creating a “society that continuously recycles plastics,” in order to stop problems related to plastic from impacting global warming and ecosystems.
In this way, the four issues set forth in the “Kirin Group’s Environmental Vision 2050” — iological resources, water resources, containers and packaging, and climate change — are not independent issues but are interrelated. Kirin's approach is to solve these related problems in a holistic way.Consortiums with NGOs and other companies, collaboration with local communities, and participation in global initiatives are all aspects of our holistic approach.
Going forward, we will continue looking at issues related to climate change, natural capital, and the circular economy in a holistic way. As such, in terms of “biological resources” and “water resources,” we will contribute to resource conservation in areas that produce raw materials and areas where we operate our businesses, and with regard to “containers and packaging,” we will prioritize in-house development, and for “climate change,” we will pursue the additionality of renewable energy, thereby creating a positive impact in society that goes beyond the boundaries of our own company.