OUR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY POLICY
WE ARE HECK!
FOOD THAT BRINGS YOU ‘FLAVOUR YOU CAN SWEAR BY’. Being family run, means we can do things differently. We make our sausages, burgers, meatballs and mince in small batches right here on our farm in Yorkshire. Although small, we’re big on premium quality & flavour. Our friends work with us too. Together, our uncompromising attitude & passionate team produce the tastiest, healthiest food for all your family. WE MAKE SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE. As well as our meaty 97% pork & lower-fat chicken products, you’ll also find our meat-free bangers on the supermarket shelves. These are approved by both the Vegan & Vegetarian Society. Our entire range is gluten free too.
Only the best ingredients go into our products. In our kitchen we are always creating new varieties & recipes. At Heck! Food Ltd we are committed to ensuring that any business undertakings are conducted as ethically as possible by following the below policy:
LOOKING AFTER OUR EMPLOYEES
- Our employees are our greatest asset. We strive to be a responsible employer by creating an environment that gives employees the desire and ability to develop. We operate in accordance with our Well-Being, Equality, Diversity, Working Hours, Dignity at Work and Training and Professional Development policies to ensure all current and potential employees are treated fairly and with respect. This includes promoting a working environment that is free from discrimination, bullying or harassment, offering remuneration packages with equal pay and opportunities regardless of gender that accurately reflect qualifications and experience; and providing training opportunities, and work placements.
- We pay all our permanent staff above the legal minimum wage, we do not use slave, illegal child or forced labour (including human trafficking) either directly or through our supply chain and record the actions we have taken to avoid this in our Statement on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.
- We operate in an open and honest way, including our clients and suppliers. We adhere to our Anti Bribery and Corruption policy at all times and apply a zero tolerance approach to acts of bribery and corruption by any of our employees, business partners working on our behalf.
- We seek and respond to the opinions of our employees by way of a suggestion box.
LOOKING AFTER OUR CUSTOMERS
WHAT OUR COMPANY DOES TO IMPROVE CUSTOMER SATISFACTION AND RETENTION:
- If customers complain, we have a very responsive customer service team. If people phone, email, write letters or send a message on social media we reply rapidly and always try to kill them with kindness to ensure they’re left feeling happy. We issue supermarket vouchers, replacement packs, send HECK merchandise and write handwritten letters. We have been complimented many times on our great customer service skills.
- Not long ago we put a sticker on pack that said ‘Try me free’. This gave consumers the opportunity to claim their money back for the pack they purchased. This will have hopefully retained many customers as they will buy us again. It gives HECK a good reputation.
- We have started adding recipe ideas onto our packaging and are always trying to inspire consumers so they can make different meals in the kitchen. In the new year we are launching our first ever cookbook! There’ll be plenty of opportunities for customers to get their hands on a free copy through social competitions and seeing us as country shows, and fitness events.
- We are always keen to bring out new, limited-edition flavours as we know consumers like this about our brand. Peck, Check, Feck, Guy Porks, The Hallowiener, The Banger, Fair & Square, the Chocolate Sausage etc. Customers can often find these flavours at shoes/events, and via our online shop.
- We sell special, money-saving bundles on our website which are always a success.
WHAT OUR COMPANY DOES TO ENSURE THE SAFETY AND QUALITY OF YOUR PRODUCTS AND SERVICES:
- We are audited against the BRC standard annually, achieving AA across both sites earlier this year. This audit covers all aspects of food safety and legality, such as HACCP, traceability, CCP monitoring, staff training records, PPE, Hygiene monitoring and validations.
- We heat seal the top off each pack to prevent any contamination. Our product sleeves clearly display all the information required for customers to know what is inside and how to cook it. Each pack clearly displays the use-by date, line number and time it was produced so we can track back to the batch if there’s any issues. In the mixing room, all the ingredients are measured exactly, and we make small batches to ensure our products are consistent. The Product Development team do a daily taste test to ensure the quality of our products is maintained.
- We have a ‘News’ and an ‘Events’ page on our website. These pages are updated each month, informing consumers about new listings, projects, campaigns and everything team HECK is busy with. We always have lots of articles in the press, and post daily on our social media channels.
- We have a club called the ‘Secret Sausage Society’. This is made up of just under 2000 people and includes a mix of meat eaters, flexitarians, veggies and vegans. We send them products and a questionnaire from time to time to gather honest feedback. This gives us a clearer idea about what people want, care about, what they like and what they don’t like.
- Most of our suppliers have evidence that they adhere to the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and operate in line with the Bribery Act 2010. As most of our suppliers are Sedex registered, we always ask in our supplier approval questionnaire. For those few suppliers that are not Sedex registered or not got a CSR Policy in place we are looking at implementing a form for them to respond to.
- We try to use local suppliers and our closest supplier is approximately 10 miles away.
- We are committed to paying all our suppliers on time.
- HECK are committed to clear communication with suppliers, we are also carrying out site visits to get to know them and their processes better, we have good relationships with them. All suppliers are approved by the technical team via a questionnaire & documents such as HACCP plans, certification and specifications.
- All our suppliers are BRC approved
PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT
OUR COMMITMENT TO AND MONITOR WASTE REDUCTION, RE-USE AND RECYCLING.
- We are always thinking of new, more sustainable ways to pack our products. We have explored compostable options, but any packaging which has contained raw meat are contaminated, and so are not suitable for composting. We use clear plastic trays rather than black trays as these are fully recyclable and have been made from 90% recycled plastic. The cardboard sleeve (and ink) is both recyclable and suitable for home composting. Our meat free sausages no longer have an outer sleeve which reduces the amount of packaging needed. The sticker on the Meat-Free range is 100% recyclable and there’s no need to try remove this from the tray. The film, which is heat-sealed over the top of all our trays, makes our products fit for health and safety and can also be fully recycled if you keep it attached to the tray. The material is so light in weight, that if removed then it will not be processed through recycling systems properly. The cardboard for our SRP & FSC from suppliers is 100% recycled.
- In 2022 we reduced our plastic intensity by 50 Tonnes, saving 175 Tonnes of CO2 a year.
- We run a ‘LEAN’ factory operation, minimising waste to below 0.5%.
- We have now measured the carbon footprint for all our core products. You will find these scores on back of pack and on our website. We’ve done this to help consumers understand how much carbon they consume so they can make conscious choices about what they buy & eat. It also means we can aim to reduce each score by making production more efficient and both purchasing and packaging more sustainable going forward. We have already managed to reduce some of the scores in the past couple of years through packaging and recipe alterations. We always try to source our ingredients as local as possible, with most coming from the UK, however there’s always room for improvement.
- We only use British meat, meaning less food miles and proudly supporting British farmers.
- All our products are 100% soya and palm oil free.
- We no longer have a separate site for our veggie products. We have managed to create a separate production area here at our main Heck HQ which has reduced transport and improved efficiency. Communication is much stronger being under one roof.
- We open our factory shop every Saturday morning so the local community can come and stock up on stock that is unable to go to the supermarkets. This ensures nothing is thrown away.
- We installed a vertical farm here on the HECK site and have begun to grow our own veg/herbs. Our NPD team experiment with these home-grown crops and our canteen enjoys the delicious results. The plan is to start harvesting some ingredients such as basil in vertical farms here in the UK as this reduces food waste and miles.
- HECK measures water & electricity usage weekly, using meters. We must make sure that water taps are not dripping. Engineers check to ensure there are no leakages and our hygiene team only use hose pipe guns to clean floors. We are going to put water saving measures in place as part of our SBT.
HECK ARE TRYING TO ENCOURAGE GREENER TRANSPORT BY DOING THE FOLLOWING:
- Being in a rural setting makes it difficult for staff to walk/cycle to our offices and factory. Some of the local staff members walk/cycle on occasions, but lots of our staff car share which is a great way of reducing the number of cars on the road each day.
- Early next year, we are installing some car charging points at the front of the factory for both staff and visitors to use.
- HECK staff are encouraged to join The Electric Car Scheme. If they decide to get an electric car, they will benefit from tax savings by doing so. We are looking into electric van options for our shows and events, but our main priority with this is keeping our stock refrigerated and so it’s not quite so straightforward. We think the best thing to do is to wait for hydrogen.
HECK PLAN TO REDUCE THEIR ENERGY USE
- We have measured our Scope 1,2 & 3 for Green House Gas emissions. We now need to continue to do this each year and have set targets to reduce our emissions. We have already made a 24% reduction in the past year. We are working up our SBTi but provisionally our aim is to have reduced our Scope 1 and 2 Emissions by 50% by 2025 and 100% by 2030, compared to our 2020 Base level.
- In the new year we are installing solar panels on the roof of our factory. This renewable energy will be responsible for 20% of the power in our factory/offices - running the machines, fridge/freezers and lightbulbs etc. This will save over 55 tons of CO2 which is the equivalent of 28,000kg of coal burned! We hope to give any excess power generated over the weekends back to the grid.
- HECK has sponsored Bedale Football Club for the past 7years The sausage inspired football kits are very striking and raise both money and awareness for Prostate Cancer UK. The football strips have featured Toad in the Hole, Bangers & Mash, Hot dogs, cheese graters and more!
- In 2020, Jack Tate from our Marketing team walked from our factory here in North Yorkshire, all the way to Cornwall to fundraise for a charity called SameYou. This charity is very close to his heart as they supported family members through a trauma. The expedition was a huge success -raising money, spreading awareness and went on to be the inspiration for the television series sponsorship ‘Devon & Cornwall Walks with Julia Bradbury’.
- At HECK, when we have vacancies, we do try to employ local people.
- We issue many raffle-prize vouchers for a huge variety of charity fundraisers every week. We also donate lots of products to charity events.
- We have donated lots of money to several charities. We recently did an on-pack fundraiser, so anyone who bought one of our limited-edition Chicken Italia Burgers with bra packaging, 25p from every sale went to Coppafeel. We hosted a ‘Boob Brunch and Yoga Morning’ which was also in support of the CoppaFeel campaign. We invite staff members and the local community to come along and support events like this and encourage volunteers to get busy baking! This is great for staff moral and involves the local towns/villages.
- We’ve held other events here at HECK HQ such as McMillan Coffee Morning’s and hope to do lots more in future.
- Andrew Keeble, one of the founders here at HECK speaks at many conferences/events and charges £1000 which is donated to their chosen charity. Andrew and the HECK team have done several school visits, educating students about healthy eating, how to get a job in the food industry and more.
- HECK donates surplus stock to several food banks and homeless shelters in the local area. In collaboration with the Bread and Butter Project, Resurrected Bites Harrogate and other local food banks, we donated over 120,000 portions of bangers, burgers and balls in 2022.
- Rather than throw anything away, we sell any surplus food through ToGoodToGo. Consumers can buy food at a discounted rate to ensure nothing is wasted.
- Before covid struck, we invited the local community to come have a free lunch at HECK HQ once a month. This attracted lots of elderly neighbours who are feeling a bit lonely. The team sit with them and provide a table service which is a lovely way to give something back to our rural area. During covid, the factory was unable to invite visitors but instead, we delivered seasonal lunches to their doors, as well as gifted limited-edition packs. Now that covid is a thing of the past, we have opened our doors again and are back feeding the locals a lovely homecooked lunch once a month.
- We have shown many groups around our factory, such as the WI, school trips etc. They get to see the entire production process and have the opportunity to taste a range of products at the end. We do not charge for tours, but suggest visitors donate to a charity of their choice.
- The HECK team litter pick along the side of the A1 on a regular basis.