Media Contacts: Josh Chetwynd, firstname.lastname@example.org, 303-573-5558; Annalisa Tarizzo, email@example.com, 617-482-0800
Boston, May 18, 2021 – A Green Century° shareholder proposal filed with Bloomin’ Brands, one of the world’s largest fast-casual dining companies and the parent of such chains as Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba’s Italian Grill, is being considered Tuesday at the company’s annual meeting. The proposal calls on Bloomin’ to increase efforts to reduce its total contribution to climate change, including from supply chain impacts like deforestation.
“Bloomin’ is lagging behind competitors when it comes to climate and deforestation risk mitigation,” said Annalisa Tarizzo, shareholder advocate with Green Century. “The company’s sparse reporting and relative climate inaction in recent years leave investors concerned that management is not taking these material financial risks seriously.”
In order to keep pace with others in the industry and to assuage investor concerns, Green Century is urging Bloomin’ to set comprehensive emissions reduction targets, including for its supply chain. The company should also adopt a no-deforestation policy.
Bloomin’ currently has weaker policies than the likes of McDonalds, Yum! Brands (Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell), and Restaurant Brands International (Burger King, Popeye’s). Those businesses have either set or committed to setting greenhouse gas reduction goals in the coming years. Each of those companies also has a no-deforestation policy.
The bulk of restaurant company emissions often come from the ingredients acquired and processed through its supply chains. For example, Bloomin’s most-sourced protein is beef. Some of this product is sourced in Brazil where raising cattle has been linked to deforestation. The already relatively high greenhouse gas footprint of beef is exacerbated when its production contributes to forest clearance.
Green Century previously filed a shareholder proposal with Bloomin’ in 2020, which earned the support of a notable 26.5% of shareholders.
“Bloomin’ cannot keep falling behind its competitors in this important aspect of its business,” Tarizzo said. “We hope the company will take shareholder concern into account and do its part to mitigate its contribution to climate change.”
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 the first family of fossil fuel free, responsible, and diversified mutual funds in the United States. 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 March 31, 2021, McDonald’s Corporation comprised 0.00%, 0.95%, 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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