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About Meiji

At a Glance

At a Glance

Get to know Meiji at a glance – from our core business to our most important numbers.

Society

Society-Oriented Goals

Targets of the 2020 Medium-Term Business Plan (effective until March 31, 2021)
KPI Results
FYE 3/2019 FYE 3/2020 FYE 3/2021
100% attendance rate at human rights training among new employees and those promoted to managing positions
(Scope of aggregation: Meiji Holdings, Meiji, Meiji Seika Pharma and KM Biologics)
100% 100% 100%
Targets of the 2023 Medium-Term Business Plan (effective until March 31, 2024)
KPI Target
FYE 3/2024
All domestic Meiji Group employees to attend a human rights training (including e-learning) at least once annually
(Scope of aggregation: Consolidated domestic subsidiaries of Meiji Group)
at least once annually
All overseas Meiji Group employees to attend a human rights training (including e-learning) at least once by FYE 3/2024
(Scope of aggregation: Consolidated overseas subsidiaries of Meiji Group)
at least once by FYE 3/2024
Hold an ESG session for investors, and dialogue with experts three times annually
(Scope of aggregation: Meiji Holdings)
three times annually
All domestic Meiji Group employees to participate in social contribution activities at least twice annually (at least once each 6-month period)
(Scope of aggregation: Consolidated domestic subsidiaries of Meiji Group)
twice annually (at least each 6-month period)

Respect and Promote Human Rights

Meiji Group’s Basic Approaches to Human Rights

Meiji Group has declared respect for human rights in its Corporate Behavior Charter, and it manages its businesses based on the strong belief that all people are inherently free and deserve equal respect and rights. We will promote respect for human rights throughout the Group and fulfill the Group’s obligations.

Revision of the Group’s Human Rights Policy

We established the Meiji Group Policy on Human Rights in 2016 and have been spreading awareness and implementing human rights initiatives. Subsequently, we revised it to the Meiji Group Human Rights Policy in February 2020 and are enhancing our initiatives on human rights. The new policy includes: international codes for supporting and respecting human rights, a ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and performing human rights due diligence.

System for Promoting Respect for Human Rights

Following orders from the CEO of Meiji Holdings, the CSO (Chief Sustainability Officer) is responsible for all human rights matters, and carries out appropriate measures in this capacity.
The Meiji Holdings Executive Committee has assembled the Group Sustainability Committee, with the aim of unifying all of Meiji Group’s various sustainability-related activities, including those concerning human rights.
In July 2019, the Group Human Rights Meeting was assembled by Meiji Holdings’ Sustainable Management Department (the department chiefly responsible for sustainability-related issues), alongside related departments and outside experts. It then began performing human rights due diligence.
The Group Human Rights Meeting has in turn set up sub-committees, each with its own individual area of responsibility. As well as this, they are investigating human rights-related issues, creating action plans for various initiatives, and taking necessary precautionary measures.
Through these actions, their goal is to raise awareness and understanding of human rights, and to build systems for addressing various human rights issues, both domestically and overseas.

Figure: human rights management structure

Implementing Human Rights Due Diligence

We started human rights due diligence in FY2019 and it forms our commitment to human rights based on the Meiji Group Human Rights Policy. We make constant efforts to communicate with external stakeholders by: assessing the impact on human rights caused by the Meiji Group’s corporate activities and identifying issues; incorporating these evaluation results into procedures and implementing them for meaningful improvements; follow-up evaluations to review effectiveness; and timely and appropriate information disclosure. By continuous improvement through these processes, we will achieve both respect for human rights and sustainable growth of businesses.

Figure: Human Rights Due Diligence

Identifying Salient Human Rights Risks and Prioritizing

In FY2019, we reviewed our entire value chain in the Food and Pharmaceutical Businesses and identified the salient human rights issues.

Figure: Identifying Human Rights Risks and Prioritizing

During FY2020 we began initiatives to respond to specified salient human rights issues, falling into the two following themes:

1) Human rights issues caused by sourcing of raw materials
- Carrying out a supply chain risk assessment (including human rights-related risks) based on questionnaires about procurement to suppliers.
- Pushing forward with measures to reduce risks from sourcing of six raw materials of particular human rights-related concern (milk, cocoa, palm oil, paper, soy beans, and sugar).
2) Human rights issues related to foreign employees
- Understanding the situation faced by foreign employees working in domestic plants
In February 2020 we carried out a survey of domestic plants and research centers directly owned by Meiji and Meiji Seika Pharma to determine the presence or absence of foreign employees. We were able to confirm that there were no issues with the work contracts or labor management of foreign employees directly employed by Meiji and Meiji Seika Pharma.
In the future we will investigate our seven business sites that employ foreign employees at manufacturing contractors, with regard to the presence of technical interns, as well as the Japanese proficiency level, work responsibilities, and details of the chain of command of foreign employees.
- Follow-up hearings at domestic Meiji Group companies
Working with results from our FY2019 survey of foreign employees, we are continuing with on-site hearings at Meiji Group companies with foreign employees.
Due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were only able to carry out hearings at one company during FY2020. However, we plan to carry out hearings at six companies in FY2021, making use of online meetings.

Responding to Human Rights Related Laws and Regulations in Each Country and Region
In expanding our business globally, Meiji Group will comply with the laws and regulations regarding the working environment and human rights established in each country, and will act in good faith in all business activities.

Human Rights Education and Training

We engage in education and training activities related to respect for human rights and prohibition of discrimination, prohibition of forced and child labor, prohibition of harassment, safe and healthy workplaces, respect for fundamental rights of employees, and more, based on the Meiji Group Policy on Human Rights.

In-Company Training

In Japan, we provide internal training related to general sustainability principles and human rights for new employees and those employees promoted to management positions in Meiji Holdings, Meiji, Meiji Seika Pharma, and KM Biologics as well as employees of domestic group companies.
Training is based on the Meiji Group Policy on Human Rights. We also conduct internal human rights training at overseas group companies.
In FY2020 we carried out “Business and Human Rights” e-learning program for the approximately 9,000 employees of the four above companies.
From FY2021 we are planning on carrying out human rights training for employees at domestic and overseas Meiji Group companies. We are also planning on taking initiatives to increase understanding of Meiji Group’s Human Rights Policy, as well as awareness of everyday human rights-related risks in the workplace at Meiji Group companies.

Results of Human Rights Trainings
FYE 3/2017 FYE 3/2018 FYE 3/2019 FYE 3/2020 FYE 3/2021
Human Rights Training Participation rate 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Number of new employees 211 237 214 211 113
Number of newly promoted managers 164 194 158 115 125

Stakeholder Engagement

Promote Stakeholder Engagement

We take every opportunity and use every means to engage in communications with important Meiji Group stakeholders (our customers, employees, business partners, shareholders and investors, global environment, and society). In this way, we answer the expectations of our stakeholders and fulfill our social responsibilities.

Employee Engagement

To achieve the Meiji Group 2026 Vision and be a company that can grow sustainably, we believe improving employee engagement is essential. Therefore, we regularly conduct the “Employee Opinion Survey.”

Communicate with Shareholders and Investors

We hold briefing meetings, IR events, and publish an informative IR website to keep our shareholders and investors up to date on the direction and strategies of the Meiji Group.
Since FY2019 we have held a large-scale ESG meeting for investors on an annual basis.

Dialogues with External Experts

We hold dialogues with outside experts, reflecting their opinions and recommendations in our vision, upcoming fiscal year plans, and business tactics.

FYE 3/2021 results
Outside Expert: Takeshi Mizuguchi, professor at the faculty of economics at Takasaki City University of Economics.
Dialogue concerned Meiji Group’s sustainability activities under our 2023 Medium-Term Business Plan, along with the best way to release information related to the extensive sustainability activities, made possible by our position as producers of food, healthcare products, and agricultural chemicals.

Environmental Communication

Each plant and research laboratory conducts reporting seminars and study groups to highlight our environmental initiatives for local citizens, local governments, elementary schools, and middle schools. In addition to covering our initiatives for water and air pollution and CO2 reduction, we also listen to feedback to incorporate into future activities.

Communicate with Our Customers

Food Segment

Our Customer Service Center strives to ensure customer trust and satisfaction through prompt, honest, fair, and appropriate service. The center receives a wide range of inquiries regarding products and services. We use this customer feedback to develop new, and improve existing, products and services.

Customer Service Center

Our Customer Service Center uses a proprietary system to record and analyze customer feedback. The center strives to respond politely and provide useful information to allow customers ease of mind in using our products. The center also shares information with related departments to develop and improve products and services for greater customer satisfaction.

Inquiries to the Customer Service Center by Subject (FYE 3/2021)
Content of Inquiries Number of Inquiries Composition Ratio
Product features 30,936 31%
Stores that handle products 21,969 22%
How to eat and store 20,673 21%
Food labeling and package design 10,495 11%
Sales promotion/campaign 6,661 7%
Foreign matter mixed in the product 5,074 5%
Others 3,829 4%
Total 99,637 100%
Investigation of customer satisfaction

Meiji’s Customer Service Center carries out customer satisfaction surveys with the aim of improving the quality of customer support.
- FYE 3/2021 Target: 95 points (out of 100)

Customer Satisfaction Survey Results
FYE 3/2017 FYE 3/2018 FYE 3/2019 FYE 3/2020 FYE 3/2021
Customer satisfaction points 90.2 91.1 90.8 91.3 92.2
Example of improvement in response to customer feedback
    Reflecting Customer Feedback to Improve Products
    <Products> Frozen Food, Meiji Pizza & Pizza (2PC)
    <Customer Feedback> Exterior back label (how to consume) is confusing.
  1. Label on the back says remove the frozen “pizza” from the interior bag. However, the interior bag is clear; I almost put it in my microwave.
  2. Caution! label text is all in red, making it difficult to read. Hard to see which point is the real point of caution.
    <After Improvement>
  1. Modified explanation. Changed “interior bag” to “interior clear bag.” Changed pull-out text next to the picture of the microwave to say, “remove from clear bag; do not wrap in plastic” (vs. “do not wrap in plastic” before change).
  2. Caution! label now in black text, using red text for important points only.

<Exterior back (top)>

Photo: Exterior back
Counseling Office for New Mothers

At Meiji’s counseling office for mothers with infants, nutritionist and national registered dieticians provide consultation on nutrition and childcare for babies and mothers. Making use of an abundance of information and experience, the counseling office gives valuable advice to new mothers, family members, and other persons engaged in childcare.

Breakdown of Inquiries to the Counseling Office for New Mothers by Subject (FYE 3/2021)
Content of Inquiries Number of Inquiries Composition Ratio
Breast-feeding 2,848 47%
Baby food 2,411 40%
Menstruation and health 439 7%
Growth and development 149 2%
Lifestyle and habits 82 1%
Mother and pregnant woman 60 1%
Others 36 1%
Total 6,025 100%

Pharmaceuticals Segment

Medicine Support Center

Meiji Seika Pharma’s Medicine Support Center uses a database to sort and analyze customer feedback. It takes customer feedback extremely seriously, and makes sure to share feedback with relevant departments to ensure better products.

Breakdown of Prescription Pharmaceutical Inquiries by Subject (FYE 3/2021)Meiji Seika Pharma
Number of Inquiries Composition Ratio
Peripheral product information (packaging, expiration dates, insurance, etc.) 7,823 27%
Quality (quality, additives, stability, formulation changes) 6,513 22%
Efficacy (efficacy, dosage and administration, pharmacology) 6,019 21%
Document requests 3,999 14%
Safety (side effects, etc.) 4,457 15%
Requests 294 1%
Total 29,105 100%
KM Biologics
Content of Inquiries Number of Inquiries Composition Ratio
Document requests 405 34%
Peripheral product information (packaging, expiration dates, insurance, etc.) 323 28%
Efficacy (efficacy, dosage and administration, pharmacology) 230 20%
Safety (side effects, etc.) 113 10%
Quality (quality, additives, stability, formulation changes) 99 8%
Requests 3 0%
Total 1,170 100%
Measures to improve quality of customer support

With the aim of further improving customer satisfaction, Meiji Seika Pharma has undertaken an external evaluation of over-the-phone customer support at its Medicine Support Center.

We are aiming to promote appropriate usage of our pharmaceutical products by offering prompt and accurate information at all times. Through this we hope to contribute to even better medical care.
- Medicine Support Center quality target: 70 points

Medicine Support Center Evaluation Results
FYE 3/2017 FYE 3/2018 FYE 3/2019 FYE 3/2020 FYE 3/2021
External evaluation score (out of 100 points) 79.6 80.2 75.1 76.8 76.0
Improved aluminum sheet used for packing inhalation capsules

We incorporated patient feedback, changing the specification for cutting V-notches in the aluminum sheet to improve usability.
We develop new products to ensure greater levels of customer satisfaction.

Photo: Improved aluminum sheet of inhalation capsules
KM Biologics has altered the printed information for its hepatitis B Vaccine 0.5mL

When administering the 0.5mL hepatitis B vaccine to children under 10 years old it is possible to vaccinate two children with a single packet.* When vaccinating small children, for example during periodic vaccination, the vaccine lot number, expiration date, as well as the manufacturer name, are recorded in the mother and child’s health handbook. However, it is also possible to simply use the sticker appended to the product itself. We have received feedback that an extra sticker would be helpful, for use when administering the 0.5mL standard vaccine to two patients.

* Please make sure to adhere to any applicable warnings that come with the product.

<Details of improvement> The size of the stickers has been changed, and the number of stickers on each box has been increased from 6 to 8.

Adequate labeling is for customers simple to understand

The Meiji Group abides by the regulation and label products which is for customers simple to understand. The Meiji Group confirms the label on products adequate.

Photo: Oisii Gyunyu Labelling
Initiatives for appropriate information disclosure

The Meiji Group complies with laws and corporate ethics in advertising and promotion activities, providing information based on fairly stated content and phrasing to prevent falsehoods or exaggerations. We conduct activities report based on our Pledge to be a customer-oriented company.

Promote Social Contribution

Social Contribution Activities policy

In January 2021 the Meiji Group created the Meiji Group Social Contribution Activities Policy. Our social contribution activities focus on three concepts: “activities to nurture people”, “activities to assist society”, and “activities to continue the world to the future”.

Our employees are helping to address various local issues, all the while contributing to sustainable development. It is our goal for each and every one of our employees to share a sense of participation in planning for society’s future.

Social Contribution Activities

Meiji Group is actively engaging in social contribution activities, based on our Social Contribution Activities Policy’s three core concepts of “activities to nurture people”, “activities to assist society”, and “activities to continue the world to the future”.
“Activities to nurture people”: We pursue activities in nutrition, food culture and sports to support the healthy growth and intellectual development of the children and youth who will be leaders of the future.
“Activities to support society”: We pursue activities needed to support the healthy and stable lives of people in local communities involved in our business activities.
“Activities to continue the world to the future”: We engage in activities to preserve the natural environment, conserve biodiversity, and encourage recycling of resources, looking ahead to the sustainable development and future of earth. We also engage in activities that support research and development tied to the creation of new health value.

Activities to Nurture People

Nutrition education activities

Our food education seminars at elementary and junior high schools began in 2005. These make use of both in-person guest teaching at schools, as well as online-lessons.

Photo: education activity

Activities to Support Society

The Meiji Happiness Fund

Established in March 2020, the Meiji Happiness Fund aims to raise awareness of sustainability, and instill a feeling of individual connection to social issues. The fund raises money twice annually through the generous, entirely voluntary participation of Meiji Group employees. In March 2021, 1,500 people from all across the Meiji Group took part. The funds raised were donated to help support medical workers continue their important activities in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Photo: Meiji Happiness Fund
Cooperation with the All-Japan Food Bank Promotion Council

More and more families are facing food insecurity due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the needs of food banks have also grown.
Meiji Group wants to help put a smile on the face of these children and their families, which is why we work with the All-Japan Food Bank Promotion Council, donating confectionery for children around important times of year, such as Children’s Day and Christmas.

Special infant formula business

We manufacture and supply a total of 18 types of special infant formula for babies born with congenital metabolism disorders that prevent them from drinking their mother’s milk, or regular commercial powdered milk. These include registered special milk, which is officially registered with the Japan Cooperative Project on Special Formula and subsidized by Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, as well as other special formulas (non-registered, yet subsidized) designed for treatment of non-congenital metabolic disorders. We focus at all times on safe production and distribution.

Photo: special milks
Rare diseases drug for Dravet’s syndrome treatment, DIACOMIT®

Dravet’s syndrome is an intractable form of epilepsy occurring in infancy. The disease develops in one infant in every 40,000. The syndrome is a severe disease that has a major impact on patients and their families because it causes seizures, delays physical and mental development, and has a high mortality rate.
As there was no effective drug for Dravet’s syndrome treatment available, We launched DIACOMIT® Dry Syrup (oral suspension) and DIACOMIT® Capsule in 2012. We make efforts to provide accurate and timely information on the effectiveness and safety of this drug to healthcare professionals for the correct dosage to patients. Patients, their families, healthcare practitioners, and the government have high expectations for DIACOMIT®, and they regularly express their gratitude to us for the drug.

<Voices of outside experts>

Meiji Group’s efforts for children with intractable diseases.
Yushi Inoue, M.D.
Emeritus Director of Hospital Shizuoka Institute of Epilepsy and Neurological Disorders National Hospital Organization

A drug for the rare disease Dravet’s syndrome, DIACOMIT has been prescribed to approximately 500 children since launch in 2012.
Covering all cases, we have collected high-quality post-marketing surveillance, a rarity for many drugs.
Enlightenment tools have been developed to enable information provision that benefits illness understanding and treatment. Recently, I have the impression that it has become less difficult to manage the severe seizures associated with this illness, which may be attributable to the popularity of DIACOMIT.
Special formulas are vital to the lives of children with intractable diseases. We are grateful that the company is responded to social needs by continuing to offer these products.

Donations to the United Nations Population Fund

We established a partnership with the United Nations Population Fund Kenya branch in November of last year, and took part in a project between January and March 2021 to support the economic empowerment of 200 women and girls in Kibera, Nairobi - the largest slum in Africa.

Photo: Donations to UN populations fund
Photo: Donations to UN populations fund

Activities to Continue the World to the Future

Paper Drink Carton Recycling Campaign

Our employees take part in the Paper Drink Carton Recycling Campaign twice annually. Through this campaign we are aiming to foster greater environmental awareness among our employees.

Photo: Paper drink carton recycling Campaign
Biodiversity Conservation Activities

We are working together with various local governments and NPOs to conserve biodiversity, both in Japan and overseas. Our areas of activity include Meiji Group production sites, as well as the Meiji Group-owned “Meiji Group Nature Conservation Area Kumamoto Sunlight Forest.”

Photo: Silver orchid