What is the Conagra Brands Supplier Excellence Programme?

How does food giant Conagra Brands operate their Supplier Excellence Programme?

US food company Conagra Brands operates a Supplier Excellence Programme under their wider supplier risk management strategy.  The programme is an extra layer of risk management for suppliers that are more significant in their Citizenship strategy.

Conagra Brands is a Chicago based packaged goods holding company, who make and sell products under various brand names that are available in supermarkets, restaurants, and food service establishments. Key brands in their wide portfolio include Birds Eye, Duncan Hines, Healthy Choice, Marie Callender's, Reddi-wip, and Slim Jim.

"At Conagra, our approach to citizenship supports a healthy planet, healthy communities and a healthy business," said Sean Connolly, President and Chief Executive Officer of Conagra Brands. "We are conscious about how our business impacts the world and our latest Citizenship Report underscores our focus on collaboration, transparency and action. It is especially meaningful that our employees continue to drive sustainable and societal impact across our business while producing exceptional results. I thank them for their ongoing dedication to doing the right things and doing things right."

Sean Connolly, President and Chief Executive Officer of Conagra Brands (Credit: LinkedIn))

The Supplier Excellence Programme

The Supplier Excellence Program involves Conagra Brands assessing the key suppliers at least annually on their supply chain risk-related performance and disclosure strategies. The company reviews metrics including the supplier’s public reporting, policies and sustainability commitments. It also reviews initiatives addressing climate change, packaging waste, agriculture, water, waste, diversity and inclusion and human rights. 

The programme is also supplemented by quarterly performance reviews and risk analysis, and the two parties work in partnership to address any areas that require improvement. The company also recognise their top performing suppliers at its Supplier Excellence Summit, which recognise the highest performers in their procurement network. 

Supplier risk management

Conagra’s code of conduct for suppliers applies to all its direct suppliers, and all criteria have to be met.  All partners are also expected to take reasonable steps to ensure all tiers of their own supply chains are also compliant with the code.   

In the first tier of supply, Conagra’s quality and risk teams review all materials that will be purchased and review audit results from third party monitoring providers.  Dedicated procurement staff also provide on-going support to all direct suppliers to explore any sustainability developments or issues.  

“Through strong collaboration with the Conagra team and a commitment to results, they have helped drive innovation across our business and contributed to building our agile and resilient end to end supply chain,” said Brian Hadden, Senior Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer, Conagra Brands.

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