Tea Unilever Essay

2302 Words Nov 5th, 2015 10 Pages
Samir Lakhani
Stephen Martinek
Mahek Parikh
Unilever Group Submission

Unilever is a consumer goods company that has a variety of product types to serve consumers across the globe. For this case, Unilever’s tea brand, Lipton, is focused on sustainability for the production of their tea production. Sustainability is defined as a method of using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged. In other words, it is focusing on a production method that is sustainable long-term. Currently, Unilever has about 25% of their tea from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms, which brought forward gains in the environmental, social, and economic sustainability of tea production. It was one of the few
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On the bright side, Unilever can use this sustainability approach as a way to differentiate from the competition. Despite potentially high costs, there are many possible returns for Unilever by maintaining 100% sustainability: a drive towards savings over the course of the long run, product innovation for Unilever, and a differentiation across the company’s portfolio of products, which will aid in their competitive advantage as competing firms work to certify their producers as well. Beyond the aforementioned benefits, having 100% sustainability would create a company better suited for survival in the future as stated by the CEO of Unilever, Paul Polman. Polman mentions in the study that some of the world’s problems include food security and resource management. By being a sustainable company they are preventing themselves from running into resource management problems that are relevant to the near future. Technically, it’s an updated version of recycling and conscientiousness on the business scale. Overall, they have committed to 100% sourcing for all the reasons mentioned.

The challenge Unilever faces with becoming 100% sustainable is trying to align the short-term and long-term goals of their brand. They can continue to produce tea at a lower cost but harm the environment (short-term) or comply with the Rainforest Alliance certification standards and increase sustainability (long-term). They decided to focus on the long

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