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Ethical brand ratings and accreditation since 2001

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How ethical is Bertolli?

Bertolli is a brand of spread owned by Upfield (KKR & Co Inc.) which has a below-benchmark score on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Butter, Margarine & Spreads Ratings Table. Although Bertolli has not yet met our ethical benchmark, we hope to see the brand make progress in the future.

We would have extra confidence in Bertolli if it submitted itself to apply for Ethical Accreditation, whereby The Good Shopping Guide would make further detailed assessment and recommendations for ethical improvement.

Find out more about the ethical issues facing the Butter, Margarine & Spreads sector.

What does Bertolli do?

Bertolli is a spread made from mainly vegetable fat, with 10% olive oil.

In which areas does Bertolli perform poorly?

Bertolli was marked down under our criteria for Organic due to a lack of certification. It also received a bottom rating for GMOs as the brand’s parent company, KKR & Co Inc., co-led a round of funding for Replay, a genome writing company.

KKR & Co invests in several oil and gas companies so Bertolli is given a bottom rating for Fossil Fuels. It also gets a poor rating for Animal Welfare as one of its sister brands (Wella) tests on animals when required by law.

As its parent company is involved with the supply of robotics within the defence industry, Bertolli gets a middle rating for Armaments. Find out more about how we rate by exploring our ethical criteria.

Past Criticisms of Bertolli’s record

In 2022, Bertolli’s parent company KKR & Co Inc. was given a score of 0.5/100 by The Financial System Benchmark, which ranks financial institutions according to measurement areas including the environment, climate, biodiversity and human rights.

Previously, KKR & Co faced allegations of harming indigenous communities in Canada and Colorado, and invested in fossil fuel companies in areas of South Texas and New Mexico where local communities are exposed to polluted air and water.

In which areas does Bertolli score well for its ethics?

We found no public record criticisms of Bertolli relating to Nuclear, so it scores well for this criterion.

Upfield has a ‘Better Planet’ page containing good targets for packaging, carbon emissions and responsible sourcing, so Bertolli gets a good score for its Environmental Report.

How can Bertolli improve its ethical rating?

The below-benchmark score that Bertolli is awarded with on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Butter, Margarine & Spreads Ratings Table is the result of an evaluation of multiple ethical criteria.

To reach our minimum ethical benchmark and qualify for Ethical Accreditation, Bertolli has many issues to resolve, including its use of GMO ingredients and lack of Organic certification, investment in Fossil Fuels and involvement in Animal Testing. If it applies for Ethical Accreditation, The Good Shopping Guide will be able to give Bertolli some guidance to improve on these areas.

Were you aware that your brand could benefit from Ethical Accreditation? Brands accredited by The Good Shopping Guide can display our ethical mark, showcasing to consumers that it is an ethical and sustainable brand.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to attain Ethical Accreditation, please contact us or complete a Free Initial Assessment form.

Ethical performance in category


GSG score


GSG category benchmark


Ethical Rating


  • Environmental Report


  • Genetic Modification


  • Organic


  • Nuclear Power


  • Fossil Fuels



  • Animal Welfare


  • Vegetarian/Vegan Verified



  • Armaments


  • Political Donations



  • Ethical Accreditation


  • Public Record Criticisms


  • Public Record Criticisms+


= GSG Top Rating = GSG Middle Rating = GSG Bottom Rating