Global responsibility

​Issues that are most material to our global responsibility strategy, including several priority issues that were ranked highest by our stakeholders.

We plan to periodically update this assessment to reflect our business and our stakeholders’ expectations.

In 2018, we updated our materiality assessment of global responsibility issues, last done in 2015. Built on input from both internal and external stakeholders, this assessment helps to guide our strategy and reporting. The table below summarizes the issues that are most material to our global responsibility strategy, including several priority issues ranked highest by our stakeholders.


Climate change Advance programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help mitigate the effects of climate change throughout the value chain
Commodity availability Maintain reliable access to key commodities and inputs
Corporate governance and ethics Operate with integrity and with the highest standards of oversight, ethics and compliance
Diverse consumer needs Diversify our product offerings and meet changing consumer preferences
Food safety Set and maintain the highest standards for food safety and quality
Health and nutrition Improve the variety and nutritional profile of our products and engage in public discussions on nutritious lifestyles
Human rights Protect and respect human rights throughout the value chain
Responsible sourcing Improve social, environmental and economic impacts of raw material sourcing
Water stewardship Reduce water use and ensure appropriate water management throughout the value chain, especially in water-stressed areas


Animal welfare Ensure the humane treatment of animals throughout the supply chain
Biodiversity Conserve a variety of plant and animal species through sustainable sourcing practices
Biotechnology Ensure responsible use of biotechnology tools and techniques in agricultural practices and food production
Deforestation Advance strategies to reduce the clearing of trees and associated environmental impacts
Diversity and inclusion Foster a diverse and inclusive workplace
Employee health, safety and well-being Maintain a safe workplace for our employees, contractors and visitors, and help employees lead healthier lives
Employee recruitment and development Provide competitive pay and benefits, and invest in training and development opportunities
Energy use Reduce energy use and costs throughout the value chain
Farmer livelihoods Support farmers’ capabilities and capacity to maintain viable operations
Food security Improve access to healthy, affordable food for the world’s growing population
Food waste Reduce food waste and loss from field to fork and beyond
Packaging footprint Reduce the environmental impact of packaging
Public policy and engagement Engage with policy makers to advance the interests of General Mills and its stakeholders, maintain the company's license to operate, and drive social and environmental improvement
Responsible marketing Maintain the highest standards for marketing and advertising, including through adherence to internal and industry guidelines
Transparency Communicate openly with stakeholders about our products and business practices