Centre for corporate sustainability

Pursuing a sustainable corporate philosophy means to adopt a gradually increasing amount of responsibility for human beings and nature on the corporate and the product level – this approach starts at the company location, continues at the value creation chain and ends with the company in general. Crucial to this approach is keeping a firm eye on the global North-South divide as well as on future generations. The implementation of sustainability measures involves a medium to long-term learning process that needs to start with an open-end dialogue with the stakeholders of the company.

Partnering with the ZNU, the Kanne corporation has been exploiting the possibilities and cooperation options this partnership offers to further its own corporate philosophy. This philosophy, in turn, serves as a breeding ground for new ideas and concepts that may contribute to a production process that is sustainable and gentle on the environment. The ZNU is an application-oriented research institute that is part of the department of economics at the University of Witten/Herdecke. As an initiative that champions sustainability in business and science we try to turn sustainability into a tangible reality for managers of today and tomorrow by working in the areas of research, teaching, and advanced training as well as by holding conferences, striving to fill these managers with enthusiasm for the opportunities sustainable management has to offer. Based in well-founded research and successfully applied in the real world, our approach considers the following starting points as most relevant:
- bringing the risks and opportunities involved with the topic of sustainability in the area of food into stronger focus for today's and tomorrow's corporate figureheads, enabling them to successfully pursue their own specific corporate sustainability strategy;
- engaging in a profound dialogue with all (relevant) stakeholders and proving to them in convincing terms that activities in the areas of sustainability have been implemented;
- providing a platform that is dedicated, in particular, to producers and dealers and allows these parties to engage in cooperative (pilot) projects – in a "protected" creative room on neutral territory;

Acting in the capacity of a university centre, the standard we set for ourselves is to be in the vanguard of the international research performed in the area of sustainability in the food industry, to combine existing and newly found results for the purposes of business practice and to conduct research projects in an effort to substantiate the debate with scientific facts. Our practical experience and scientific findings are constantly incorporated into the lessons we teach to our students.