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Monday, June 8, 2020 12:00 AM

A Message from Miguel Patricio, Chief Executive Officer of The Kraft Heinz Company

Miguel Patricio

Chief Executive Officer of The Kraft Heinz Company

Two weeks ago today, we saw the horrifying and shocking video that showed George Floyd being killed by police in Minneapolis. The days since Mr. Floyd’s death have been incredibly painful – but no one has felt this pain, anger and frustration more viscerally than African-Americans, including Black employees at Kraft Heinz. We have to say out loud that systemic racism against African-Americans is at the root of why he was killed. It’s the same systemic racism that killed Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, and far too many other Black Americans whose names we have heard over the past several years – and countless others whose names we don’t know.

We at Kraft Heinz say BLACK LIVES MATTER.

This week, we are talking with employees about one of our new Values, We demand diversity. We have a duty to be part of the solution – even as we are honest about where we as a company have fallen short. Going forward, we must hold ourselves accountable for helping to make things right.

That is why TODAY we are announcing several actionable steps we are taking as a Company, thanks to real, honest conversations with our African American Business Resource Group (BRG). We took the past week to really listen and to be thoughtful about where we as a company can make the most difference toward ensuring positive change and advancing equality at Kraft Heinz and in our communities. We will:

  • Make an immediate $1 million commitment to support food programs and social justice organizations serving African-American communities most affected in recent months by police brutality and COVID-19 in the United States. Kraft Heinz will make separate commitments over the next five years, both within the United States and globally.
  • Make Friday, June 19th a global Day of Service for employees to support social justice organizations
  • Ensure people of color are better represented at ALL levels throughout Kraft Heinz, introducing robust development programs.
  • Launch Mentoring and Development programs companywide to help them develop skills that prepare them for future roles within the organization.
  • Add companywide educational resources and support and encourage Black employees to take part in internal and external development programs.
  • Provide company managers and leaders with additional resources and training, including on overcoming unconscious bias.
  • Create a talent pipeline that better reflects the communities where we do business by expanding and building new local and national partnerships to attract and develop underrepresented candidates.
  • Strengthen and broaden our relationships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities, or HBCUs, while also providing career learning and development tools to students before they graduate.
  • Address systemic inequality by reviewing and expanding our supplier diversity guidelines for minority and women-owned businesses and launching a new training and mentoring program for them to become Kraft Heinz suppliers.
  • Create a cross-functional Inclusion Council to help review and guide our Diversity and Inclusion strategy.

These efforts are just the beginning. We are committed to addressing issues of inequality as part of our ongoing journey – and we’ll keep working to make things better. For us as a company, and for us as individual human beings, silence is not an option. It’s on ALL of us to listen first – and then to speak up, speak out and act. Each of us has a role to play in making justice real – for each other, in our communities, and in the countries where we live.

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