CSR of ASAHI BEVERAGES
Protection of environment is the responsibility of all and with this ideology corporates are adopting sustainable practices from fulfilling their responsibility towards environment and society. The organization selected for the CSR review is Asahi Beverages of Australia. This report would cover importance of dialogue between companies and other stakeholders of environments, negative impact of hollows claims in relation to CSR on corporates with some practical examples. The report involves analysis of CSR report of Asahi Beverages along with investigation of how green is the organization. Further, the report assesses the importance of communication in Corporate Social Responsibility. The dangers of empty boasting and CSR are discussed in the report. Explanation of dangers of empty boasting is consists of two of the examples from the business world in order to explain Empty boasting and reputation perfectly.
Corporate social responsibility is one of the important processes and initiatives of an organization in order to get success in terms of growth as well as in the eyes of customer, stakeholders and society. Proper communication of CSR is a need for business in present environment. In the absence of appropriate strategies with respect to CSR and absence of proper dialogue organization could be in trouble. Asahi Beverages is the organization with huge success. The organization follows CSR activities and these strategies are in agenda of the organization.
Table 1: How ‘green’ is my company
|1. Company name:||Asahi Beverages|
|2. Industry type:||Beverage Industry|
|3. Is there a CSR department?||Yes|
|4. What is it called?||Responsibility Department|
|5. Is there a CSR Report for 2018?||Yes|
|6. Is it available on the website?||Yes|
- Corporate Social Responsibility in Action. Which social change activities does the company engage in? Identify activities from each relevant category.
|CSR activity||R OR Q||Activity|
|a. Environment||R||Environment policy|
|b. Consumer responsibility||R||Health and Safety policy|
|c. Community||R||Health and safety Policy|
|d. Employee relations||Q|
|8. How ‘green’ is the website?||Secure|
|9. How ‘green’ is the company?||Very much as it incorporate CSR in its policies.|
|10. CSR indices/rankings||Company has got 94 % out of 17334 companies as per a report of CSR Ranking (2019).|
Explanation: The selected organisation is Asahi Beverages having operationsinAustralia andNew Zealand. It is a member of Asahi Group Holdings, a leading Japanese Beverage company (Asahi, 2019). Company has a separate department for CSR which focuses on environment, health, people and society. The website contains report of various CSR initiatives taken by company. The annual reports of Asahi Group also contain detail about the different CSR initiatives taken by the group for a particular year. The company is green as it has incorporate CSR activities in its different organisational policies which create an obligation for fulfilling the CSR requirements.
Table 2: Attributes of the CSR report
- Describe the form and content of the CSR report:
|The CSR report is in the form of description of initiates taken by the company. The report also provides differentareas for which company is making its efforts for fulfilling its social responsibility.|
- Who is the report designed for?
|Constituency||R OR Q||Key message|
|a. Investors||R||Responsible organisation|
|b. Employee present||R||Make operationsenvironment friendly|
|c. Employees future||Q|
|d. Academics||R||Different CSR activities|
|e. Community activities||R||Serving people and safety|
|f. Public officials||R||Responsible corporation|
|g. Corporate managers||Q|
|h. Other||R||Suppliers, Strategic partnership for improvement|
- How thorough and credible is the report?
|Report elements||R OR Q|
|a. Is this a CRS report?||R|
|b. Does the report provide details on CSR practices as well as policies?||R|
|c. Does the CSR report provide systematic data?||Q|
|d. Does the company report data in a comparable form?||Q|
|e. Does the report present future goals as well as past practices?||R|
|f. Does the report include bad news as well as good news?||Q|
|g. Does the report address the company’s greatest CSR challenges?||R|
|h. Does the company integrate CSR reporting with its traditional business strategy and its financial reporting?||R|
- Identify the key elements of the report
|· Reduction in wastage|
· Reduction in carbon emission
· Reduction in water usage
· Sustainable sourcing
· Target of sugar reduction content
· Responsible marketing and advertising.
- Identify two sustainability initiatives
· Installation of big rainwater harvesting system at Tullamarine site.
· Installation of LED lightings at our various plants.
Explanation: The website of the company providesdetails of key areas in which company is performing CRS. The report targets different stakeholder such as public officials, employees, investors, academicians and community withdifferentaim like obtaining funds, entering into partnership with suppliers, favorable image in the eyes of government and like. The report of the company highlights the initiative taken by the company as well as its future planning like by the end of 2025 company targets to reducethe sugar content of its 90 % products (Asahi, 2019). Further the initiativesof company for CSR like LED usage for saving energy and water conservation are also beneficial for the financial performance ofthe company.
The present world is full of competition. Further, news travels very fast and also in a cost effective way. In such environment, the expectations of consumers, shareholders as well as general public keep on changing from the companies. This is not just limited to the demands of customers for products or services but it is also true in the case of environmental and social role of corporates (Nwagbaraand Reid, 2013). Therefore, an active and ongoing communication with public on various platforms like newspaper, corporate websites, social media would help company is identifying the areas, working on which would help in fulfilling the corporate social responsibility of companies.In addition, an active andongoingdialogue would help company in identifying theactivities of companies which is causing harm to people, environment, flora and fauna. Identification of such activities would help companies making internal process effective and sustainable which would increasethe profitability of companies in future.
In the view ofBravo, Matuteand Pina (2011), effective communication makestheorganization social responsible. One way of companies communicating with public about CSR is through CSR reports which include proof of activities undertaken by companies for reflectingthe level ofcommitment of company for sustainable development ofenvironmentand society. Communication efforts of one company canincrease goodwill of the firm, which motivatesother companies to practice CSR activities. A healthy competition commences between organizations in sameindustry and the company which fulfills the responsibilities gains a competitiveadvantage over companieswhich do not perform CSR activities (Alhouti, Johnson& Holloway, 2016).
Also, with the emergence of social media, people postsenvironmentconcerns directly to media, government agencies, andcompany which possesschallenge for the company.Companies must see dialogue as an opportunity forimproving own business activities as it is going to help organization in adopting sustainable practices (Grougiou, Dedoulis&Leventis, 2016).
Ongoing dialogue between corporates and general public regarding corporate social responsibility has various benefits attached as discussed in previous section. But, there has many drawbacks attached with lack of communication between corporatesandgeneral public regarding public and environment welfare issues which are mentioned below-
- Exploitationof resources: The main motto behind any business is to earn profit. If corporates focus on only this motto then it would result in exploitation of resources to a great level. Because of lack of dialogue between various stakeholders companies will engage in activities whichresults in maximum output with no concernforenvironment, health, safety and society (Porter& Kramer, 2015). Further, the financial success of one organisation would make other organisation performing CSR activities to stand in line in the race of profit maximization which would create an environment in which all corporates has one motto of earning profit through all means keeping aside the future responsibility towards people,environment and earth.
- Less efficientpractises: Lack of dialogue about sustainablepractices would ledcompanies to continue with existing practices. This would fail companies in identifying the drawbacks in present practices and makesthe operations less productivity (Tamara & Epstein, 2016).
- Short sightedness: In the absence of an active dialogue between public and corporates for sustainable practices would make company think that whatever CSR practices adopted by companies are best and there is not further scope for improvement. It is to be notedthat the environment is worst hit by the actions of companies and it is general public which faces the ill effect due to damage to environment. Hence, there is an indirect but close relationship between company, environment andgeneral public and in the absence of proper dialogue corporates might not understand the real impact oftheir activities which would lead to damage to environment and health of living beings.
- Goodwill:Lack of communication from company about its good actionstowardsenvironmentalprotection would keep people unaware ofsuch actions. This way investors, suppliers, customers, public officers would have no idea about the actions taken by company for the welfare of environment or public which otherwise have created a positive brand image in the minds of all stakeholders (Russell, Russell& Honea, 2016).
Following are the risks associated with empty claims of company about CSR which are not backed by substantial proofs-
- Legal actions: Any organization which makes certain claims on black andwhite about any CSR activity or actions which is not fulfilled by it could be challenged in court, which could penalize the company making false claims. The seriousness of impact decidesthe level ofpunishment for responsible authorities.
- Loss of Goodwill:Empty boating with no substantial support raise doubts on eth performance of organization which creates negative image in the mindsof customers and other stakeholders. The activities offirms are seen with suspicion by regulating agencies and later on any minute mistake would lead to serious actionsagainst company.
- Loss to business: Empty claims regarding CSR attracted negative publicity on all media platforms like newspaper, news-channels, social media which degrade the brandimage of company which affectthedemandof its products in the market. This ultimatelyresultsin loss of profit andeven might leadto closure of business. Also, it would affect the credibilityoforganization which would make it difficult for the company to get credit from suppliers,finance from banks etc.
Below are two corporatesexamples of hollow and false claims along with its ill effect on companies-
- Coca-Cola: In India, Coca Cola claimed its drink to be free from pesticides, but an NGO claimed that it contained pesticides more than the European standard. The same is found true in a court but the level is safe as per Indian standard and hence the company hasnot violated any national law. But, the hollow claim of Coca-Cola has attracted criticism which has severelydamaged its reputation and negative effect on its sales figures. Later on Coca-Cola hasto launch separate advertisements for showing the drink safe for consumption.
- Volkswagen: Company has claimed about environment friendly car but in reality it was polluting the environmentbecauseof which its CEO hasto resign and company has introduced more transparent mechanism in its activities to avoid such situation in future.
Engaging is CSR activities is beneficial for all i.e. companies, people, environment and society. It offers opportunities to corporates to bring improvement in their practices and make them future ready. A company can include CSR in its policies for its effective implementation. However, companies must show their commitment for CSR claims and deliver their promise as any failure would attract negative publicity for company resulting in bad image of company.
CSR practices must be incorporate inbusiness practices for realizing its true benefit, such as installation LED lights, Water harvesting etc.
- Any claim regarding CSR must be verified by top official in detail as any deviation would have serious impact on organization’s image.
- Alhouti, A., Johnson, CM. & Holloway, BB. (2016), ‘Corporate social responsibility authenticity: Investigating its antecedents and outcomes, Journal of Business Research, vol. 69, no. 3, pp. 1242 – 1249.
- Asahi (2019) https://www.asahigroup-holdings.com/en/csr/
- Bravo, R., Matute, J. and Pina, J. (2011). Corporate Social Responsibility as a Vehicle to Reveal the Corporate Identity: A Study Focused on the Websites of Spanish Financial Entities. Journal of Business Ethics, 107(2), pp.129-146
- CSR Ranking (2019). https://www.csrhub.com/CSR_and_sustainability_information/Asahi-Breweries-Limited
- Grougiou, V., Dedoulis, E. &Leventis, S. (2016), ‘Corporate Social Responsibility Reporting and Organizational Stigma: The Case of “Sin” Industries’, Journal of Business Research, vol. 69, no. 2, pp. 905 – 914.
- Nwagbara, U. and Reid, P. (2013). Corporate Social Responsibility Communication in the Age of New Media: Towards the Logic of Sustainability Communication. Review of International Comparative Management, 14(3), pp.400-414.
- Porter, M. & Kramer, M. (2015), ‘Profiting the Planet’, Fortune, vol. 172, no. 3, pp. 64 – 65.
- Russell, C., Russell, D. & Honea, H. (2016), ‘Corporate social responsibility failures: How do consumers repond to corporate violations of implied social contracts?’,Journal of Business Ethics, vol. 136, no. 4, pp. 759 – 773.
- Tamara, B. & Epstein, M. (2016), ‘21st Century Sustainability, Strategic Finance, vol. 98, no. 5, pp. 28 – 37.