Management Approach 2016 (Disclosure 103-1, 103-2, 103-3)
Effective management of ecological and social effects along the entire supply chain is the key to securing high-quality raw materials, to providing sustainable products to our discerning customers as well as to ensuring ethical business practices. Our long-term goal is to procure all our raw materials from sustainable and responsible sources and to do this in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals formulated by the United Nations. Due to the high complexity that results from numerous material flows in our raw materials portfolio, our sites face numerous challenges that must be mastered for us to achieve our sourcing goals. These challenges include, for instance, closing information gaps regarding the origin of raw materials as well as providing details that are relevant to the sustainability of production and the processing of raw materials. This information is indispensable in order to analyze performance in the area of sustainability.
We ensure that suppliers also comply with our comprehensive sustainability standards through systematic supplier management and compliance with our responsible sourcing policy. This means that new suppliers must provide information about their sustainability program and the assumption of ecological and social responsibility along their supply chain.
We require the protection of general human rights, the commitment to not engage in any child or forced labor of any type and compliance with statutory requirements for safeguarding health and safety in the workplace. Furthermore, we expect our suppliers to allow their employees the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining, to observe at least the statutory provisions on working times and pay, and to make a clear commitment against discrimination and abuse.
We also require that our suppliers conserve resources, reduce and avoid air emissions, ground emissions and wastewater, commit themselves to the preservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and avoid environmental risks effectively.
These standards constitute part of our Group-wide risk management system. In this connection, we conduct risk and performance evaluations of suppliers from economic, ecological and social perspectives.
We assess the sustainability performance criteria of raw materials and products using a sustainability scorecard system developed specially for this purpose. This scorecard system offers internal and external stakeholders better guidance for decision-making in order to improve sustainability. At the same time, we are working with multistakeholder initiatives, such as SEDEX and the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative, so that we are able to influence sustainability performance along the supply chain more directly. This also applies to our backward integration approach. With regard to important core competences, we have deliberately chosen locations for our international production facilities where the raw materials primarily used are available locally. We not only purchase our raw materials there but are also integrated in the local economy, produce there and create value there. This approach enables us to support local socioeconomic structures and maximize our ability to monitor and improve compliance with our ethical and ecological principles (see also management approaches to the supplier environmental assessment, child labor, forced or compulsory labor, human rights assessment and supplier social screening).
Symrise obtains the majority of one of its main raw materials, the onion, from farmers within 50 kilometers of the plants where the vegetables are processed. This applies both to Germany and France, where the main production sites are located. Purchasing the onions from the region ensures low transport and energy costs. At the same time, it makes joint development work easier: Symrise works with consulting organizations such as the Hanover Chamber of Agriculture, universities and also with the producers and suppliers to make the products even better.