CUSTOMERS AND THE COMMUNITY
A constant appreciation and encouragement of employee professional development is one of the fundamental principles of the Minerva Foods culture. The Company is confident that it would not have been possible to achieve the level of excellence that it has obtained as a global player in its sector if it had not relied, throughout its history, on the commitment, competence, and dedication of its entire team.
By the end of 2019, the Company had 17,448 employees and 1,021 outsourced service providers in Administrative, Commercial and Industrial/Operational areas, by means of direct employment or as a private entity.
Procedures that ensure safety and well-being in the work environment, training, and initiatives to improve the quality of life are applied to everyone in the company in accordance to a set of instruments based on the Code of Ethics – Company Guide to Conduct, labor legislation and in the Normas Regulamentadoras (NR) a set of regulatory standards.
Employees receive various benefits such as monthly food benefits and meal compensation, transportation, among others established by law, in agreements and collective bargaining established with the trade unions within each category. In addition, there are restaurants on-site, which provide subsidized meals by Minerva Foods. They also have special agreements in the municipalities where they operate, obtaining discounts and deferred payments in health and dentistry plans, pharmacies, gas stations, butcher shops, and with dentists, just to name a few. 401-2
safety management is the
benchmark in the industry
The result was a rate of 0.66 in accident frequency per million man-hours worked, taking into account the industrial units in Brazil. In absolute numbers, the index represents 11 employees throughout the year with low severity and duly monitored, who were able to return quickly and in full capability to resume their duties.
The advances in the area of occupational health and safety have occurred on several fronts in Brazil as well as in the industries controlled by Athena Foods. The initial investment in the segment was approximately R$ 60 million, which allowed the most critical risks to be addressed through engineering measures as well as a robust individual protection plan to avoid the most frequent accidents where it was not possible to mitigate the risk with the aforementioned measures.
One of the main initiatives in this regard was a leader safety development program Desenvolvimento de Lideranças em Segurança, which provided the leadership team an in-depth immersion in the topic with team representatives from all units in Brazil and Uruguay. More than 335 leaders were trained on how to change their vision of safety and promote the new concepts among their teams.
The methodology used provoked reflections that encourage employees to think about how they must take care of themselves, not just in the work environment, but in their routine inside and outside the home. To protect themselves against the risks to their physical and psychological integrity and the important role that leaders play in the safety of other employees.
Some tools were used to strengthen safe work practices, such as the Safety Observation Program, a practice that consists of using behavior cards. As safety becomes a value, the employee is able to help their colleagues by showing what risks they are taking and what they need to do to correct their actions. At the same time, the program endeavors to value those who exhibit safe behavior at work, congratulating them and demonstrating the importance of their attitudes to their work, their colleagues and the Company.
Risk assessment is conducted under the Programa de Prevenção de Riscos Ambientais (PPRA), an environmental risk prevention program, in which a company specialized in occupational safety services performs risk and hazard assessments for all of the activities of Minerva and identifies the work environment, the characteristics of the teams and agents (risks and hazards) present in the work environments. Another survey is carried out through formal inspections for risks and hazards in the workplace along with statistical analysis of behavioral observations.
In addition, there is a specific accident prevention commission that is responsible for evaluating the risks of the work and proposing measures for mitigation. Any worker can immediately exercise the right to refuse exposure once the risk has been identified. 403-2
All the industrial units are equipped with outpatient doctors, nurses/technicians, ergonomic specialists, and speech therapists. Where there is no clinical structure available, third-party providers are hired for local support, providing 100% coverage of operations.
To further ensure the advancement of workers’ health, occupational physicians prepare and coordinate the Programa de Controle Médico de Saúde Ocupacional (PCMSO), an occupational health medical control program that is in line with the Environmental Risk Prevention Program (PPRA), which provides subsidies for the control and management of risks and their agents in the workplace. In addition to the PCMSO, health and medical checks (active/passive) are conducted on workers, which provides data for an epidemiological analysis for each person, from which individual or, if necessary, entire area measures are developed. In addition to medical programs, professionals in the area promote health campaigns, vaccination campaigns, lectures, safety discussions, individual guidance, and other activities. 403-3
Other tools have been enhanced with a focus on changing the mindset. This is the case of the Daily Safety Dialogue (DDS), previously coordinated by the safety professional and now carried out by the trained leads. The leaders have also begun to perform systemic safety inspections and are responsible for notifying departments, such as maintenance, when necessary.
A new initiative was started, the Diálogo do Gerente in which at least once a month the manager engages in a small chat with the team in order to reinforce the view that safety is an issue that involves everyone and that it is not only the responsibility of one department. While the Health and Safety team works to promote improvements in operations and provide weekly technical guidance on topics such as personal protection or in regards to Coronavirus.
Three training modules are also applied in regard to occupational health and safety. First, regulatory and legal, such as the Normas Regulamentadoras do Ministério do Trabalho which are the regulatory standards issued by the ministry of labor, and the Instruções Técnicas do Corpo de Bombeiros which are technical instructions developed by the fire department. Second, personal/professional development, such as leadership training in safety and behavioral observations. Third, those that occur through other channels such as Safety Dialogues and Coach. 403-5
Minerva Foods has adopted a rigorous management system of occupational health and safety standards, supported by regulatory norms and other legislation corresponding to the subject.
In 2019, in compliance with its Occupational Health and Safety, Environment, Food Safety and Social Responsibility Policy, the Company carried out a series of training and educational campaigns for employees to adopt behaviors and practices that ensure their safety.
All operating units in Brazil maintain a Comissão Interna de Prevenção de Acidentes (CIPA) which is an internal commission dedicated to accident prevention that is formed by elected employee representatives and professionals appointed by the Company. They meet on a regular basis and organize events such as Semana Interna de Prevenção de Acidentes do Trabalho (SIPAT), a week-long event the highlights accident prevention at work, held in connection with Jornada SGI, in which presentations, training, medical evaluations, recreational activities, and other activities are carried out. One training activity that stood out was a virtual reality game designed to reinforce the Golden Rules of safety. All employees are represented by formal health and safety committees, composed of workers who assist in monitoring and providing guidance on programs related to the matter.
In addition, a Safety Committee was established in 2019 to address issues that go beyond legal obligations. Meetings, which are held monthly, aim to analyze the results and reports of accidents that have occurred, identify areas that need improvement, detect opportunities for progress, and define action plans. This has brought more dynamics to the management and reinforcing awareness of the safety culture.
Changes regarding the activities of CIPA were also carried out, with an adjustment and expansion of the structure necessary for its members to fulfill their responsibilities. One of the tools adopted was the Auditing Plan of CIPA team members, in which they carry out monthly audits and inspections in various sectors and present their findings to the CIPA Committee, creating a dialogue in the process of resolving the problems.
The awareness and guidance campaigns were also instrumental in achieving the best annual results in the history of the Company in the area of health and safety. Throughout 2019, one campaign was promoted per month, addressing everything from diseases such as chikungunya to travel care tips for summer holidays. The highlight was the Flu Vaccination Campaign, which was provided free of charge to all employees.
For 2020, the priority in Occupational Health and Safety is to complete the expansion of its management model to the units of Athena Foods, thereby standardizing the processes and routines, in addition to spreading the change in mindset, establishing the same culture in the segment.