GRI 308: Supplier environmental assessment
Explanation of the material topic and its boundary
Fostering compliance with high standards in health, safety, social, environmental and business integrity in the way we source enables us to reduce our environmental and social impact. Our sourcing strategy also helps to mitigate the risks inherent in our complex supply chains. Supplier environmental assessment is related to our material topics Deforestation, Water stewardship and Responsible Sourcing, though our policies also cover energy use, emissions and waste. We work with our suppliers to make sure they have plans in place to meet our sourcing standards. Examples include collaborating with suppliers and other key partners to halt deforestation and support reforestation along Givaudan’s supply chain as well as ensuring that we make efficient use of and limit the environmental impact of the way we consume and discharge water. We also work with them to make sure that they meet our Responsible Sourcing Policy requirements in terms of energy use, emissions and waste.
We source a wide variety of raw materials, often from various suppliers through multiple supply chains. In order to better understand the origin of raw materials we map supply chains beyond our direct suppliers. This creates the transparency we need to assess whether or not practices throughout the supply chains meet our Responsible Sourcing Policy.
Apart from our expectation that suppliers meet legal requirements, we also call on all of them, including smallholders, to make continuous improvements in regard to our Responsible Sourcing Policy. The policy, published in 2016, sets out high standards in terms of health and safety as well as social and environmental responsibility and business integrity. We ask our suppliers for collaboration in supporting the policy and disclosing information that could help drive improvement. We target improvement in respect to our Responsible Sourcing Programme at every level of our supply chains, from primary producers of raw materials to intermediary suppliers, service providers, workers and employees. The approach also helps us serve our customers, who increasingly seek to understand the impact of their supply chains and ask for more data on environmental and social aspects.
We are working towards all of these goals through a two-pronged approach: we work with our main direct suppliers through site audits and we assess the full length of supply chains for strategic raw materials of natural origin. We aim to ensure that all main direct suppliers comply with our Responsible Sourcing Policy and our target is to have all of them reach full compliance with their audits by 2020.
Our Procurement team and implementation partners work closely with suppliers to guide them through the Responsible Sourcing Policy, identify gaps, agree on remediation plans and prepare for the audit. The sites of direct suppliers are audited according to Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA), one of the most widespread ethical audit formats in the world, or by an equivalent protocol. Auditing suppliers accordingly allows them to benefit from a mutual recognition agreement among the members of the AIM-PROGRESS platform.
Progress on supply chains of raw materials of natural origin
We work together with partners and suppliers to increase transparency in our supply chains and improve their sustainability practices.
Our aim is to source these raw materials responsibly by either identifying existing best practices or by reaching agreements with our suppliers on improvement plans to close gaps in relation to our policy. For raw materials sourced in several countries through multiple supply chains, we carry out assessments gradually over time. This continuously increases our responsible sourcing coverage in volume, and means that some raw material categories are partially covered. By the end of 2019 we were mapping 50 raw material categories and were sourcing 33 raw material categories in a responsible way.