We focus our resources where we can make the most difference for our company, society, and the environment.
To have the most impact, we focus on what we do well by prioritizing the corporate responsibility issues that are closest to our business and, conducting periodic assessments of our most material issues. When we look holistically across the landscape of social, environmental, and economic issues and evaluate where we should focus our resources, we have identified four major priorities:
- Alcohol Responsibility — encouraging responsible drinking through moderate consumption of our products in a way that brings social enjoyment rather than harm
- Environmental Sustainability — positively influencing regenerative management practices for water, energy, and other resources that we use to make our products
- Our People — fostering talent, and valuing diversity, creativity, commitment, and expertise of our employees enables us to grow and endure
- Community Relations — contributing our time, talent, and resources to the communities to which we belong so that they are better places to live and work
Responsibility is about doing more together than we can on our own. We seek relationships with our partners where ideas and resources are shared to inform and implement our corporate responsibility strategy. We partner with individuals and organizations because we believe this kind of deep collaboration leads to greater positive impact. A selection of our partner relationships is outlined below:
Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility
The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (Responsibility.org) is an independent U.S. non-profit funded by the distilled spirits industry that works to eliminate drunk driving, prevent underage drinking, and promote responsible alcohol consumption. For Responsibility.org’s 25th anniversary they launched Responsibility Starts With Me, a campaign whose goal is to spark a national conversation about alcohol responsibility. Our employees participated in the campaign, describing what being responsible means to them.
In the U.K., we influence responsible marketing practices as a board member of the Portman Group, an organization representing leading alcohol producers. The Portman Group promotes a strict Code of Practice to ensure alcohol is marketed responsibly and not in a way that might appeal to those under the legal drinking age.
The Ad Council
The Ad Council is a non-profit organization that produces, distributes, and promotes social issue campaigns that improve everyday lives, creating a measurable difference in society. Brown-Forman is part of a multi-partner team supporting the Ad Council’s Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving prevention campaign.
In Australia, we are strong supporters of DrinkWise, a non-profit that promotes behavior change through informational and educational campaigns, including their campaigns aimed at parents as role models and influencers.
The Healing Place
The Healing Place in Louisville, Kentucky, reaches more than 600 men and women suffering from drug and alcohol addiction daily, providing the tools for recovery and restoring productive lives. Our support includes both financial contributions and our employees’ time and talent.
The Morton Center
The Morton Center in Louisville, Kentucky, restores the health of individuals and families struggling with alcoholism and other addictions by providing specialized counseling and educational services. The Morton Center partners with our Corporate Responsibility team, to offer educational programs to company employees addressing many facets of addiction.
Fundación de Investigaciones Sociales A.C. (Foundation of Social Research) (FISAC)
FISAC is a non-profit established in 1981 by leading producers of wine and spirits and mass media in Mexico. We partner with FISAC’s mission to contribute to a responsible drinking culture through health education and the promotion of balanced healthy living. FISAC focuses on drunk driving prevention, combating underage drinking, promoting responsible consumption in adults of legal drinking age, and respecting those who choose not to drink.
Responsible Retailing Forum
We partner with the Responsible Retailing Forum (RRForum) to assess and improve retailer performance on ID checking and training to prevent underage drinking. RRForum brings together stakeholders, including regulatory enforcement agencies, retailers, distributors, and producers to identify and implement best practices to prevent underage product sales. One such alliance occurred between the International Town & Gown Association and RRForum, who partnered to develop an Alcohol Responsibility Program promoting the responsible sale, service, and consumption of alcohol in member communities.
Responsible Hospitality Institute
We work with the Responsible Hospitality Institute in their mission to assist communities and create safe, vibrant, and economically prosperous places to socialize.
Designated Driver Services
We believe the most effective deterrent to drunk driving is awareness of the consequences to victims and the driver. In addition, it is important to provide access to practical alternatives for planning ahead and not driving drunk. We support several designated driver services around the world, including Lyft, Uber, Dryver (formerly BeMyDD), PointZero8, Drink and Drive Intelligently, and CityScoot, as well as local taxi companies.
Ceres is a non-profit organization that mobilizes investor and business leadership to build a thriving, sustainable global economy. Since joining in 2011, Brown-Forman has partnered with Ceres to engage with independent stakeholders on important environmental sustainability issues.
The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is the leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. Brown-Forman has partnered with the Kentucky Chapter of TNC since 1975, on projects ranging from stream restoration at the Woodford Reserve Distillery in Versailles, Kentucky, to promoting urban conservation at Brown-Forman’s headquarters in Louisville.
The Beverage Industry Environmental Roundtable
The Beverage Industry Environmental Roundtable (BIER) brings together the sector’s global leaders to collectively advance environmental sustainability by driving an agenda that helps accelerate reducing resource consumption and mitigating environmental impacts. Brown-Forman partners with BIER, providing technical knowledge, insights, and experience that help BIER to accelerate solution development, and enable the sector to speak with an allied voice and inform the development of global standards.
Active Heroes is a non-profit in Louisville, Kentucky, whose mission is to reduce veteran suicide and assist military families. Active Heroes partners with one of Brown-Forman’s Employee Resource Groups, BRAVE, which supports, develops, and promotes the unique characteristics and needs of military veterans and their families.
Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign (HRCF) improves the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people by working to increase understanding and encourage the adoption of LGBT-inclusive policies and practices. Brown-Forman began participating in HRC’s Corporate Equality Index in 2009, receiving a perfect score of 100 each year since 2010, and continues to support the organization’s mission.
Fund for the Arts
Fund for the Arts works to maximize the impact of the arts on economic development, education, and quality of life in Louisville, KY, our hometown. Our partnership provides valuable opportunities for our employees to serve on the organization’s Board of Directors, in its NeXt! Leadership program, and to volunteer for the annual workplace campaign.
Metro United Way
For over 30 years, we’ve been a proud partner of Metro United Way, a pillar of the Louisville community dedicated to improving education, financial stability, and health for those in need. Our employees serve as board leaders and committee members and lead internal campaigns to raise money for its programs.
Volunteers of America
Volunteers of America creates positive change in the lives of individuals and communities through a ministry of service that seeks to help our most vulnerable populations struggling with the disease of addiction. We have worked with Volunteers of America Mid-States for 18 years, helping end homelessness for families through our Louisville Family Housing Services.
United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
As we look to the future, we were inspired by the recent introduction of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a set of 17 global goals designed to address a broad range of sustainable development issues from poverty and gender equality to climate change.
We reviewed our corporate responsibility strategy against the SDGs to understand where our work aligns with these goals. We have identified a smaller subset of goals, which we believe have the strongest connection to our work and are where we can have the most impact. These include SDG 3, 6, 7, and 15: