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2016 Report
Our Food Journey™

The information within this report covers topics based on Global Reporting Initiative indicators and relevancy to our business and our stakeholders.

To select content, we assessed key topics in our industry and engaged with stakeholders to understand their concerns, questions and feedback. This dialogue gives us a picture of future topics of interest to our stakeholder groups, helps us understand the issues to anticipate and/or address, and outlines the questions we can help answer. We engage with stakeholders who have an active role or stake in our business, as well as those who help us improve as a company and are looking to engage in constructive dialogue.

In determining the information to report, we conducted a process to identify topics based on the interest of our stakeholders — a group that includes employees, customers, consumers, investors, suppliers, nongovernmental organizations, government agencies and communities.

The analysis included interviews, socially responsible investor (SRI) inquiries/questionnaires, customer questionnaires, consumer feedback, meetings, conferences and media coverage. From there, we prioritized the topics based on their importance to the business.

View the key topics assessment section for the results of our analysis.


Employees (current, prospective and retired)

How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Biennial engagement survey
  • Intranet (daily)
  • Monthly location-specific newsletters and quarterly companywide magazine
  • Annual town hall meetings with the CEO and executives at various plants
  • Departmental meetings (ongoing)
  • Annual performance reviews
  • Ongoing recruitment tours (college campuses, job fairs)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Company information
  • Strategic vision, employee and retiree benefits
  • Compensation
  • Diversity
  • Employee safety
  • Community outreach
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Include benefits information in materials for employees and in our corporate responsibility report
  • Measure and include safety and demographic data in our corporate responsibility report
  • Hold annual meetings to communicate company goals and progress to employees at all levels
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Improved safety
  • Increased employee engagement and retention
  • Improved communication of the company’s progress and motivated employees
  • Community support and retiree engagement and involvement


How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Conferences (ongoing)
  • One-on-one meetings (ongoing)
  • Facility and farm tours (ongoing)
  • Sales meetings (ongoing)
  • Questionnaires (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Food safety
  • Healthy food
  • Food prices
  • Animal welfare
  • Environment
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Integrate customer feedback into product development
  • Respond to questionnaires and inquiries
  • Connect customers with internal experts
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Increased understanding of the business and practices
  • Demonstration of our best practices
  • Identification of risks and opportunities
  • Development of customer relationships


How Hormel Foods Engages
  • One-on-one meetings (ongoing)
  • Supplier Quality Management System (ongoing)
  • Supplier site tours (ongoing)
  • Supplier site audits (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests

Standards required to remain/become a supplier of Hormel Foods

How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Requirements outlined in our Supplier Responsibility Principles
  • Recognize top suppliers through annual awards
  • Participate in ongoing dialogue
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Improvement of quality from suppliers
  • Increased accountability
  • Improvement of supplier relationships
  • Improvement of supply base


How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Rankings/questionnaires (annually)
  • One-on-one meetings (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests
  • New product development
  • Food prices
  • Commodity costs
  • Code of ethics
  • Governance
  • Environmental impact
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Respond to questionnaires/inquiries
  • Verify data from analysts compiling rankings and indices
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Correct information
  • Benchmark data


How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Consumer hotline (daily)
  • Consumer research (ongoing)
  • Social media (daily)
  • Websites (daily)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Food safety
  • Healthy food
  • Food prices
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Answer questions through hotline and social media channels
  • Promote more proactive information and take suggestions
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Improve consumer loyalty
  • Correct misinformation
  • Helpful suggestions for how to improve our business
  • Better understanding of our consumers’ concerns and interests to help provide the best products on the market


How Hormel Foods Engages
  • One-on-one meetings with members of congress and regulatory agencies (ongoing)
  • Public forums via panels (ongoing)
  • Plant tours for elected officials (ongoing)
  • Engagement in associations and subcommittees (ongoing)
  • Reports and regulatory filings (ongoing)
  • Hormel Foods Political Action Committee (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Commodity costs
  • Animal welfare
  • Food safety
  • Local community concerns
  • Regulatory climate
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Updates to management about key issues
  • Engage in ongoing dialogue about these issues
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Better understanding of our practices and processes
  • Communication of our culture, commitment to communities and the impact we have on the industry and in communities
  • Positive business policies

Philanthropic Partners

How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Charitable Trust Committee (quarterly)
  • Conferences (ongoing)
  • Disaster response and matching gifts (ongoing)
  • Plant community donations
  • One-on-one meetings and visits (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests

Hunger relief efforts

How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Developed formal hunger and community giving strategy
  • Provide resources to plant locations to give to local organizations to help with hunger relief
  • Engage in social media to support partners
  • Provide donations for disaster relief
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Formal hunger strategy
  • Employee engagement
  • Community involvement
  • Relationship-building in communities

Nongovernmental Organizations

How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Meetings (ongoing)
  • Response to questions/concerns (ongoing)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Animal welfare
  • Water
  • Supplier Responsibility Principles
  • Human rights
  • Cost of rising food prices
  • Global food system
  • Food safety
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Consider topics raised in our reporting and operating practices
  • Maintain ongoing dialogue to incorporate a variety of changes to business practices and explain business practices
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Improved two-way conversation about the industry and business practices
  • Identification of risks to the business or larger issues in the industry


Communities where manufacturing facilities are located and international communities suffering from malnutrition

How Hormel Foods Engages
  • Representation and participation in community organizations (ongoing)
  • Sponsorships (ongoing)
  • Plant community donations (ongoing)
  • Community events (ongoing)
  • Local media relations (ongoing)
  • Visits to Guatemala (several times per year)
Stakeholder Interests
  • Community involvement
  • Philanthropy
  • Environmental impact from our operations
How We Respond To Their Interests
  • Hold meetings to discuss local concerns
  • Invest in community infrastructure
  • Developed product to address malnutrition in children internationally
  • Provide information about food safety, health and nutrition through Project SPAMMY®
Ongoing Results Of Engagement
  • Positive community relations
  • Employee engagement
  • Positive corporate reputation
  • Large number of community groups engaged

Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Notes

  • G4-18

    Process for defining the report content and aspect boundaries; how the organization has implemented the reporting principles for defining report content.

  • G4-24

    List of stakeholder groups engaged by the organization.

  • G4-25

    Basis for identification and selection of stakeholders with whom to engage.

  • G4-26

    Approaches to stakeholder engagement, including frequency of engagement by type and by stakeholder group.

  • G4-27

    Key topics and concerns that have been raised through stakeholder engagement, and how the organization has responded to those key topics and concerns, including through its reporting, and name of stakeholder group.

GRI Content Index