SEC Ruling Requires Public Food and Beverage Companies to Report on Material Scope 1 and Scope 2 Emissions

The ClimateHound Team
Mar 8, 2024
3 min read

Carbon emissions don’t just put our planet at risk – they can put investments in publicly traded corporations at risk as well. A security isn’t secure if a company’s business practices accelerate climate change, cause rolling impacts across the global economy and create the potential for fines and other legal consequences. 

Over the years, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), a government agency that regulates the investment market, has considered different approaches to helping investors and consumers learn more about the environmental profiles of companies and manage climate change-related risks. On March 6, 2024, the SEC adopted the following new requirements:

  • Starting in 2025, publicly traded companies (i.e., those that sell stock on public markets to investors) must report on significant climate-related risks they face, and how they’re managing those risks. 
  • Similarly, starting in 2026, the companies must disclose the emissions created directly by their business operations and indirectly by the energy they use in those operations – Scopes 1 and 2, for those of you who have already visited our primer on the subject – and have their data verified by third parties.

While many organizations, including ClimateHound, had hoped for a wider mandate requiring companies to disclose emissions upstream and downstream from their businesses (Scope 3, if you’re really nerding out with us), the SEC ruling is an important development, and the impact will be felt immediately in the food and beverage industry. Among the approximately 10,000 corporations required to report under this new rule are names you know: Suntory, Pernod Ricard, AB InBev, and more. And the mandate may ultimately apply to an even wider range of food and beverage businesses – including yours. 

The SEC ruling raises awareness among investors and consumers about the very idea of climate transparency. Instead of racing to catch up with changing expectations around climate change-related disclosures, we urge food and beverage businesses to lead the way. Starting to understand and manage your carbon footprint and climate risks NOW means that you can get out in front of government regulation, public demand, AND your competitors. 

The process of calculating emissions and understanding your climate risks can be time-consuming and complicated, though, and true investor-grade reporting is more than a full-time job – it requires a whole team. ClimateHound can be a sustainability partner for you and your business. With a platform tailored to the unique challenges and opportunities of the food and beverage industry, we offer a fast and affordable track to carbon footprint analysis, meaningful emissions reduction initiatives, tools for understanding and managing climate risks, AND the only industry-specific third-party certification available. 

As a Bonus:

Many clients have found that measuring and reducing their emissions results in cost savings, better energy management, and other operational efficiencies, benefiting their bottom line. Invest in our shared climate future and start your carbon footprint analysis now.

Become a net-zero contributor today, don't wait until 2050.