Making sustainability happen
Ambitious goals are crucial to achieve long-lasting change.
This is our agenda
Together with our owner Axel Johnson, we have set a target to become climate neutral by 2030.
By continuously reducing our energy consumption through initiatives for increased energy efficiency and always buying energy from renewable sources, as well as focusing on transportation with less impact on the climate, we are heading towards our next ambition: to become climate neutral by 2030.
Circular process implemented for polyester
Worn-out polyester products from the industry turn into new products in the fashion industry.
By finding new partners and collaborations within and across industries, we have the possibility to develop new ways of reusing and recycling worn-out materials and products. In collaboration with some of our sister companies within the Axel Johnson Group, we are exploring new processes to handle worn-out polyester from our companies and turning it into new products within the fashion industry.
Aiming for all suppliers from risk areas to be audited
We work for good working conditions throughout our supply chain by auditing all suppliers in risk areas.
We strive to have audited all suppliers of our private label products from risk areas by 2022. With the support of our local Chinese sustainability auditors, we have established a systematic way of working with suppliers to achieve compliance with our Code of Conduct.
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% compared to 2016
Together with our owner Axel Johnson, we aim to reduce our share of greenhouse gas by using less energy and switch to renewable sources, as well as prioritise transports with less climate impact.
We will reduce our impact on the climate by cutting down our greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by the end of 2020. Our companies work with energy efficiency projects and we aim for all our companies to switch to renewable energy. We also work towards buying transport solutions with less climate impact.
Have 80% of waste sorted and recycled
Taking care of our waste and promoting recycling of products and materials.
Waste management can be challenging in the industry. The conditions for handling industrial waste differ between countries and varies in maturity, which makes resource efficiency a challenging task. As a large international group, we can share knowledge and best practices to work towards increased reuse and recycling of industrial waste streams, such as plastic, metal and carbon paper.
Having all suppliers sign our Code of Conduct
Making sure all our suppliers accept our demands of responsible production and working conditions.
Systematic approach to Health and Safety
Everyone who works with us should have a safe and healthy working environment.
We encourage our companies to establish a systematic approach for Health and Safety and to work according to ISO 45001.
Providing safe and healthy working environments for all our employees is a high priority within our group. Some co-workers are exposed to high risks in their daily work when providing service for customers, e.g. well-below ground in mines, or on high heights such as windmills. With shared resources and experts within Health and Safety, we increase knowledge and awareness in our group.
Providing training in product materials
Providing training in product sustainability for our companies, with focus on private label products.
At Axel Johnson International, we offer education based on our product sustainability guideline to purchasers and product owners in all our companies to increase awareness and improve the dialogue with suppliers regarding materials and any unwanted substances. We also use forums and networking to promote knowledge-sharing within the group.
Guideline for material in private label products
Product sustainability is based on the life of a product.
We believe that product sustainability offers many business opportunities which we continue exploring.
Product sustainability is based on the life of a product, beginning with virgin raw materials to final product, transport, usage, and end of life treatment. The guideline focuses on the materials in a product and reducing risks for living organisms and the environment by avoiding regulated substances. There is also a focus on enabling refurbishment and recycling of the product at end of life.
To support our companies, we have implemented a guideline for product sustainability, to increase knowledge within this area.
Focusing on compliance of suppliers in risk areas
Conducting on-site audits in China
In order to work towards compliance with our Code of Conduct and continuous improvement in our supply chain, we established a systematic way to audit and follow up suppliers in China.
We have a wide range of suppliers of our private label products, mainly in China. To establish good working conditions among our suppliers in China, it is important to have local presence and local auditors. We have set up a company in Ningbo, China, and hired experienced in-house resources to gain full control of the audit quality and sustainability-related areas.
Guideline for sustainability in the supply chain
Systematic approach for good working conditions in our supply chain.
All suppliers in our supply chain must meet the requirements of the Axel Johnson International Code of Conduct. In 2018, we established a guideline for how to work systematically with sustainability-related areas in our supply chain. The Code of Conduct sets the basic level and the guideline “Sustainability in the supply chain” presents the recommended systematic approach and how the risks are to be prioritised.
Raise awareness in the supply chain
Guided by our Code of Conduct, we work for good working conditions in our supply chain.
Working systematically to reduce risks and improve working conditions in our supply chain is one of our focus areas. This is a strategic decision, as the supply chain is important for our businesses and for moving towards a more sustainable industry. By supporting our suppliers, we can make a difference and contribute to establishing good working conditions and safe working environments throughout the supply chain. This can be challenging for individual companies but as a large group with shared resources and clear goals, we can achieve greater impact.
Evaluate materials in private label products
By demanding good material in our private label products, we can make a global impact.
The products we handle every day should be safe for both people and the planet. Our long-term goal is to only provide private label products that are in line with regulated substances.
In the risk and opportunity analysis, we found that we must increase our knowledge about the materials in our private label products. We started a dialogue with some key suppliers of private label products about the material used in the products, and we also ran material tests and evaluated the products towards international and EU regulations such as REACH and RoHS. We prioritised products based on volume and those that come into direct contact with people.
The basics are in place
The strategy is established and implemented. A focused and far-sighted sustainability work begins.
We have the ambition to be a driving force for change in our industries and believe that companies will play a crucial role in the transformation towards a more sustainable industry. Our strategy is clear: we want all our companies to meet common group goals, and at the same time encourage those who want to be at the forefront. In 2016, we implemented some basic tools:
Based on the risk and opportunity analysis, we have developed and implemented KPIs with clear long-term goals, such as the share of renewable energy, the number of accidents, compliance with business ethics and emissions of climate gases.
Code of Conduct
The aim of our Code of Conduct is to ensure that stakeholders within our supply chain work in-line with relevant international directives and regulations. We want to make a positive impact and increase transparency in our supply chain in order to strengthen our relationships. In case of noncompliance with our Code of Conduct, we agree with the supplier upon a corrective action plan to improve and reach compliance. Our Code covers the areas of human rights, labour rights, anticorruption and environmental related areas.
Code of Ethics
The aim of our Code of Ethics is to ensure that all employees within our group have a common view upon good ethical behaviour and professionalism. The code is our internal guide and states what is expected of all employees within our group. The code provides clear instructions for behaving in accordance with our ethical standards and where to turn when in doubt. In case of witnessing or learning about any activity that could contradict our values and our code, we encourage all our employees to speak up. Our whistle-blower service is available 24/7.
Basic web training about sustainability
In order to develop our sustainability work within Axel Johnson International, we identified the need to establish a common understanding. To increase the commitment and the ability to contribute to our sustainability efforts, all our employees attend a mandatory basic web training.
Introduction of new companies
Sustainability is an important part of the process when evaluating potential acquisitions. For new companies in our group, we have an introductory program where sustainability is an important part. We see sustainability as a critical parameter of the business, now and in the future.
Risk & opportunity analysis
A risk and opportunity analysis highlights our starting point and gave us the direction for our sustainability journey.
The risk and opportunity analysis was performed with involvement from the whole organisation. Key people from our companies participated together with the sustainability team and group management in several workshops to identify our business opportunities and risks. The results from the analysis became the basis for our focus areas and how we work with sustainability. The analysis gave us the prerequisites to prioritise and act in the area of sustainability, with focus on systematically minimising risks and developing opportunities.
A sustainability team established
Our sustainability team is formed to provide support and to prioritise and implement actions throughout the group.
In 2015, we formed a sustainability team with representatives from each of our business groups. The team’s responsibility is to support initiatives in our more than 100 companies, and to drive the group’s work within sustainability-related areas, guided by common goals, policies and processes.