Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholder engagement

In a dynamic and complex operating environment, proactive and measurable stakeholder engagement is fundamental to our ability to create value. We acknowledge that our corporate reputation is based on the extent to which we meet the legitimate interests and expectations of stakeholders.

We appreciate the benefits derived from stakeholder dialogue and endeavour to maintain active and productive relationships, identifying and addressing relevant issues on a continuing basis.

This transparent approach allows us to mitigate risks, identify new business opportunities, deliver on our commitment to the communities in which we operate and maintain our integrity as a responsible corporate citizen that does not profit at the expense of the environments in which we operate.

Our stakeholder engagement programme is based on the following principles:

  • Impact: Focusing on those issues of material concern to our stakeholders and how to best address them in a collaborative and constructive manner, while embracing the concept of free, prior and informed consent.
  • Context: Understanding the views, needs, performance expectations and perceptions associated with these material issues.
  • Accessibility: Responding expeditiously to stakeholder interventions and engaging proactively to provide expedient, comprehensive and beneficial feedback.

During the year, processes were put into place to increase our engagements with key operational, commercial and financial stakeholders, and with the group’s supply-chain participants by way of a phased process to share with and collect information from Illovo’s top non-cane suppliers by procurement value, regarding the principles contained in our Code of Conduct and Business Ethics and their adherence to it. Of increasing importance is our engagement with local communities and other vulnerable stakeholders guided by the principle of “free, prior and informed consent” in relation to all matters where new group projects may impact on them. Our procedures involve environmental and social impact assessments, continuing stakeholder engagement and risk and impact monitoring, while continuing consultation processes involve mechanisms to address grievances. In relation to matters which do not involve the company directly, and in relation to which the company does not have direct interaction with affected stakeholders, we are nevertheless committed to ascertaining that the third parties involved (including governments) conduct themselves in line with human rights principles and internationally acceptable best practice standards. These matters and examples of our stakeholder engagement are contained in our 2015 Socio-Economic Impact Report and the independent Corporate Citizenship Report which may be viewed on our website at

Illovo’s operations are typically surrounded by cane supply areas owned and operated by the group as well as private growers. Given the inextricable links among growers themselves, and between growers and our own agricultural and factory operations, together with the surrounding communities, formal and informal representative structures exist at various levels across the spectrum supporting continuous and healthy stakeholder engagements on common and extraordinary matters of mutual concern.

The board retains oversight of stakeholder management, while implementation and monitoring of stakeholder engagement is undertaken at both group and country levels.

Reaching out with our stakeholders…

Throughout the vast expanse of our geographic footprint extending over six southern African countries, with sugar and downstream markets spreading over many more, our day-to-day encounters with the men and women working and living in the communities in and around our operations, bring richness and value to the contribution of our own employees, adding considerably to the continuing sustainability of Illovo. These are people whose concern is not for themselves but for those of their own people and their own communities, acting as catalysts for economic and social growth as they harness and direct the significant multiplier effects brought about by the group’s agricultural and manufacturing development. See for more information on our important stakeholders.

Catherine Ngalauka   Pedro Paulo Mabasso
Catherine Ngalauka, Deputy Head teacher for Kanjedza Primary School in Blantyre:
“With bright, colourful and educational teaching aids painted on classroom walls, together with the provision of proper school desks, our annual pass-rate has improved considerably”.
Pedro Paulo Mabasso, treasurer of the Associação Canavieira Combate à Pobreza, Manhiça.
“We work together to help one another; it’s the way we do it. Where we have come from difficulty ourselves, we have the experience to help others, and that is what we must do.”
Thulas Ngidi   Sam Sithole
Thulas Ngidi, South Coast farmer and Chairperson of Sezela Cane Growers’ Association and Board member of Illovo Sugar (South Africa) Limited: “There are so many opportunities to explore. Being involved in the structures has opened my mind and has enabled me to play a meaningful and constructive role in bridging the gap between commercial and land reform growers.”
Sam Sithole, Project Manager for LUSIP, Swaziland Water and Agriculture Development (SWADE). “Our Project objective as mandated by SWADE is to empower rural communities using irrigated sugar cane agriculture among other agricultural enterprises, while Ubombo’s objective is to get feedstock for its factory. So our objectives are of mutual benefit; we need each other to achieve. I cherish working with Ubombo employees, especially those in the outgrower unit.”
Alice Libenanga   Phanuel Hankede
Alice Libenanga, Division Officer Mang’ula Tanzanian Government and member of Kilombero Community Charitable Trust (KCCT) Board of Trustees since its inception in 2003. “My life is the well-being of my people – I am committed to these communities.”
Phanuel Hankede, farmer and Trustee, Mazabuka Sugar Cane Growers Trust. “Seeing Zambia Sugar change peoples’ lives for the better has been wonderful. People who previously could not send their children to primary school are now able to afford university fees. That’s what makes me enjoy my work.”


Date: Wed, 15 July

Time: 14:00

Venue: Illovo Sugar Park

Notice of AGM


Contact Us

Illovo Sugar Park, 1 Montgomery Drive, Mount Edgecombe, KwaZulu-Natal

Tel: +27 31 508 4300