Mary Baudouin, Provincial Assistant for Social Ministries
Jesuit Committee on Investment Responsibility Applauds Bunge Corporation

Late last month, Provincial Assistant for Social Ministries Mary Baudouin and Fr. Phil Judge, SJ, appeared at the Bunge Limited annual meeting of investors to officially close out the Jesuit Committee on Investment Responsibility’s engagement with the holding company. 

Since 2009, the Jesuits and other investors have been in dialogue with Bunge Limited on issues of water usage and sustainability in their worldwide operations. This engagement is part of the Jesuits socially responsible investment strategy. 

Socially responsible investment involves using the investment portfolios of the American and Canadian Jesuit provinces to influence corporate policy decisions.

At the May 25 meeting, Baudoin and Fr. Judge represented the collaboration of Jesuits of the U.S. Central and Southern Province, the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States, and other faith-based investors associated with the Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility. 

“We are here today to end our engagement and to thank and congratulate you on the strategic and substantial commitments Bunge Limited has made in the last seven years,” Baudouin told the group.

“Bunge has exceeded our initial requests and expectations about accountability to investors and the broader public, and has become a business leader on issues of sustainability.”

Baudouin cited the significant goals set in Bunge Limited’s 10-year plan to achieve a smaller environmental footprint. Since the Jesuit Committee on Investment Responsibility (JCIR) began its engagement, Bunge has:

  • Signed the United Nations CEO Water Mandate (2015)
  • Increased transparency and disclosure 
  • Committed to zero deforestation in their operations
  • Reduced their carbon footprint 
  • Established a board level sustainability committee 
  • Added senior level staff to focus specifically on sustainability
  • Strengthened their leadership in international coalitions addressing sustainability, including becoming the first agriculture company to join the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

“We understand that Bunge leaders are diligently working on ways to become thought leaders and advocates on water and other sustainability concerns in the agriculture industry - and beyond,” Baudouin said at the meeting. 

“The Jesuit Committee on Investment Responsibility, along with our ICCR partners, feels confident that the structures, commitments, coalitions, and reporting mechanisms that Bunge has put into place will insure the company’s ongoing attention to your operations and practices that impact water usage in the future.”

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