The Danone Way program was implemented in 2001 to address the goal of spreading the culture of the dual project and the basics of sustainable development throughout our company.



The Danone Way program was implemented in 2001 to address the goal of spreading the culture of the dual project and the basics of sustainable development throughout our company.

An initiative promoting the deployment of best practices in sustainable development

Through the Danone Way Guidelines, central teams implement sustainable development recommendations at Danone subsidiaries. These cover 263 practices organized into four main groups based on level of maturity (fundamentals, progression, maturity, and exemplarity) and 20 themes, also divided into four categories: governance, health, social and environment. Danone Way includes a host of spin-offs and webinars that enable subsidiaries to take the program fully on board and make it their own.

The vast majority of our subsidiaries conduct an annual self-assessment based on the program’s core concepts. This in turn is a rich source of data for central teams, letting them monitor the level of best practices achieved by subsidiary, by geographical region and by division, and provide support as needed.

Danone Way offers subsidiaries a process built on continuous progress

Each year, subsidiaries receive an updated program guide to the key practices that will help them achieve our sustainable development targets for each strategic theme.

A coordinator brings together experts from each theme to conduct the subsidiary’s global self-assessment. This lets subsidiaries review how their practices fit into the maturity and performance grid.

After a review by the central teams, subsidiaries receive a scorecard setting out their results—global maturity (rated by a number of stars from one to five), detailed performance by theme, and key practices needed to move ahead.

Danone way results

In 2017, the program’s coverage rate is up to 83,9% (versus 94,1% in 2016). This year’s decrease is mainly due to the addition of WhiteWave entities in the financial consolidation perimeter.

Since 2002, the Danone Way guide and participants’ results have been subject to regular audits carried out by an independent third party. Between October and December 2017, a sample of subsidiaries representing 20.6% of the consolidated sales of Danone Way participants was audited. After having reviewed the audits' results and the consolidation methodology, the independent third party certified Danone Way results with a moderate level of assurance.


In the end of 2017, 81% of subsidiaries have reached the total Danone Way score of 3, based on business practices and key KPIs achievements, on at least one of the 20 Danone Way themes. This highlights the diffusion of a sustainability culture that has become a standard. Amongst others, this has been enabled by the implementation of a clearer guide for the subsidiaries: more developed explanations and practical examples were given for it to be better understood and applied.


Besides, Danone keeps on rising its expectations in order to have ever improving practices in its subsidiaries. This can explain why some subsidiaries do not reach a total score of 5 this year anymore and that some (very few though) are back to a total score of 1.

2017 Danone Way results at a glance

Danone Way covers over 263 practices grouped into 20 key issues, tracking their deployment. The practices' guidelines are structured around four major topics which are governance, health, social & environment.

For each practice, subsidiaries declare if they are compliant or not—or if they have an equivalent local practice. In the results below, we have taken equivalent local practices into consideration. It is worth noting that certain subsidiaries do not self-assess all of the key practices in the Danone Way approach, since certain evaluation criteria are not relevant to them. The percentages displayed here below correspond to the percentage of CBUs for which a given practice has been defined as applicable/relevant and at which level it is in place. We undertake controls to systematically verify conditions for non-applicability.

Examples of Danone Way practices implementation in 2017

The data provided in this section does not include WhiteWave entities. They will be integrated to Danone Way practices reporting in 2018.




of subsidiaries have communicated the Corporate Compliance Policies to all required employees (no possible comparison with 2016).



73% of subsidiaries have set up a crossfunctional working group or committee on sustainability, including a Danone Way coordinator, a Sustainability Integration Manager or Public Affairs responsible.



61% of subsidiaries have consulted a selection of stakeholders (internal and external) to prioritize sustainable development issues at a local level.



85% of subsidiaries have trained all of their buyers to RESPECT, Danone’s responsible procurement program, using the internal training documentation.

71% of subsidiaries formalized in minutes the information/discussion meetings between management and employee representatives bodies.



99% of subsidiaries have done a survey analysis for all Danoners in the last two years to identify working organization challenges. For example, Danone People Survey, Great Place to Work survey or any other study based on employees feedback concerning working time, working organization, work-life balance, workload and stress.



97% of subsidiaries have set up a “learning plan” and budget allocation target for collective & individual needs for all populations (workers, staff and supervisors, managers, sales representatives if applicable).



98% of subsidiaries prepare a Talent Review of managers’ skills (promoting their development), and include this in HR management tools to allow regional consolidation.


of subsidiaries allow each Danoner to have access to some main activities and tools to support his/her own talent development (no possible comparison with 2016).

74% of subsidiaries have systematically considered three points in recommendations for new product launches: appropriate nutritional composition vs needs of target consumers; comparison of nutritional composition to alternatives available on the market; consistency of advertising/communications and nutritional quality.



73% of subsidiaries have teamed up with local stakeholders to address a relevant public health issue.




of subsidiaries have a concrete plan to deliver the carbon annual reduction target on each item of their Direct Responsibility Scope (production, packaging, logistics, product end of life, etc.), and this plan is embedded in the subsidiary mandate for the current year. (no possible comparison with 2016).

67% of subsidiaries have a concrete action plan with local or centralized procurement teams that shows progression to eliminate deforestation from/due to soy by 2020 in line with Danone’s commitments described in the soy Policy.



of subsidiaries provide access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene to all their employees in their plants and offices (thus compliant with the WASH pledge self-assessment) (no possible comparison with 2016).



of subsidiaries have engaged a process of water risk assessment or water footprint analysis on their whole value chain (including upstream). (no possible comparison with 2016).


of subsidiaries are doing an annual updated mapping (in volume) covering all their packaging lifecycles (feedstocks origin and type of after-use systems at country level)  (no possible comparison with 2016).



of subsidiaries have a roadmap to increase the recyclability of their packaging that can be defined by the subsidiary itself or that can be part of a worldwide or regional roadmap. (no possible comparison with 2016).



of subsidiaries have a clear roadmap on Animal Welfare allowing the subsidiary to be compliant with the Animal Welfare position paper by 2020. (no possible comparison with 2016).



of subsidiaries have a clear roadmap to cover most critical topics of the Sustainable Agriculture Principles (i.e. biodiversity, animal welfare, carbon, energy, water, soil)defined in the Sustainable Agriculture White Paper. (no possible comparison with 2016).

Assurance Report
On Danone Way Results
(172 KB)