General Mills shareholders call for less plastic packaging — Over 55% of voting shareholders opt for Green Century proposal

Media Contacts:
Annie Sanders, Director of Shareholder Advocacy,, 773-272-6691
Mark Morgenstein, Media Relations Director,, 678-427-1671

BOSTON, September 27, 2022 – A noteworthy 55% of General Mills shareholders voted Tuesday in favor of a Green Century° shareholder proposal urging the company to issue a report to determine if and how the company can increase the scale, pace and rigor of its sustainability efforts by reducing plastic packaging.

“It’s clear that plastic packaging pollution is a rising concern among shareholders and consumers alike,” said Leslie Samuelrich, president of Green Century. “No one wants a sea turtle to choke on their cereal bag. Investors have sent an unmistakable message that General Mills needs to do something about its plastic packaging footprint.”

The United States’ plastic recycling rate clocked in at a dismal 5%-6% in 2021, and studies show that corporations need to reduce their absolute use of plastic by one-third by 2040 to bring the plastic pollution problem under control. Some companies are starting to cut plastic voluntarily from their packaging, and those that aren’t may soon have to, legally. Both Colorado and California passed “Extended Producer Responsibility” laws this year that require companies to take responsibility for their waste, and the issue is gaining traction in other state houses across the country.

As a response, in part, to this changing regulatory landscape, General Mills’ competitors including Kellogg’s, Unilever and Procter & Gamble have made public commitments to reduce plastic packaging by 2025.

“The bottom line is that companies know they need to cut plastic, and many are starting to act,” said Annie Sanders, Green Century’s director of shareholder advocacy. “This majority vote from shareholders gives General Mills marching orders to establish a baseline plastic footprint so the company can assess what’s possible. Investors, consumers and the planet demand it.”


About Green Century Capital Management

°Green Century Capital Management, Inc. (Green Century) is the investment advisor to the Green Century Funds (The Funds). The Green Century Funds are a family of fossil fuel-free, environmentally responsible mutual funds. Green Century Capital Management hosts an award-winning and in-house shareholder advocacy program and is the only mutual fund company in the U.S. wholly owned by environmental and public health nonprofit organizations.

*As of June 30, 2022, General Mills, Inc. comprised 0.00%, 0.27%, and 0.00% of the Green Century Balanced Fund, the Green Century Equity Fund, and the Green Century International Index Fund respectively. As of the same date, other securities mentioned were not held in the portfolios of any of the Green Century Funds. References to specific securities, which will change due to ongoing management of the Funds, should not be construed as a recommendation by the Funds, their administrator, or their distributor.

The percentage in favor was calculated by (i) dividing the number of votes in support of the proposal by (ii) the sum of the number of votes voted in support of and against the proposal. Abstentions and broker non-votes were not included in the calculation.
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