Our strategic approach to sustainability

Creating shared value

As a key strategic focus area, sustainability is crucial to the delivery of our Group strategy and is integrated across all areas of our business.

As with any business, we need to deliver value for our shareholders, but this should not be at a ‘cost’ to society. So the concept of shared value and mutual benefit is central to our whole approach to sustainability – by taking action to address our impacts today, we can create value for the future of our business and for stakeholders across our value chain.

Our sustainability agenda

Our sustainability agenda was developed through a detailed materiality process, which we refreshed in 2017. It has identified three key areas that have the greatest significance to our business and our stakeholders, which we cover in detail in our annual Sustainability Report: 

  • Harm reduction: We are committed to working to reduce the public health impact of smoking, through offering adult consumers a range of potentially reduced-risk products.
  • Sustainable agriculture and farmer livelihoods: We are committed to advancing sustainable agriculture and working to enable prosperous livelihoods for all farmers who supply our tobacco leaf.
  • Corporate behaviour: We are committed to operating to the highest standards of corporate conduct and transparency.

These are underpinned by our ongoing focus to reduce the environmental impact of our operations, and to build a diverse and engaging culture for our people.

Our approach

Our approach is based on transparent independently assured reporting, stakeholder engagement, a detailed materiality process and sound governance procedures.

We have been producing independently assured reports since 2001 and believe this long history of reporting demonstrates a serious commitment to corporate responsibility and sustainability. Read more about how we report and go to sustainability reporting to download our latest reports.

Our process for stakeholder engagement includes formal partnerships, collaborations and memberships, contributing our expertise and sharing information, as well as ongoing dialogue as part of our day-to-day business. Read more about stakeholder engagement.

We use a materiality process to identify the key areas that have the greatest significance to our business and our stakeholders. This determines our sustainability agenda and the content of our reporting. Read more about materiality.

Effective governance is critical to ensuring we manage our sustainability impacts, and our wider business, responsibly. Our governance structure starts at the Main Board of Directors, who have oversight of strategic sustainability issues, while our Board Audit Committee has responsibility for monitoring our sustainability performance. We also have clear policies, principles and standards that detail the way we do business and how we behave, covering issues such as human rights, bribery and corruption, environment, health and safety.