MHI Solutions - Volume 3, Issue 5 - (Page 8)

FEATURE Ensuring Supply Chain Supplier Sustainability & Transparency BY CHARITY BURNS S 8 MHI SOLUTIONS * Q1 ustainability is a buzzword that has come to play a critical role in the development of any company's reputation. Over the past decade, consumers have gasped at headlines exposing the unethical working practices of suppliers to major brands. In 2007 Mattel, known to have been an early industry leader in sustainability, made news when it recalled 19 million toys produced in Chinese factories because they were covered with lead paint. As more work is outsourced, bad behavior on the part of your suppliers can trickle down and damage your brand. Just one incident can leave a permanent mark on a company's otherwise sterling reputation. While most companies don't have the complicated global supply chains of mega-retailers, all companies depend on suppliers. And when suppliers do not maintain sustainable practices-when they harm workers, their communities or the environment-they damage the company's reputation, which could result in incalculable financial loss or even hefty fines. According to the United Nations Global Compact, a practical framework for supply chain sustainability published in 2010, "There are numerous reasons why companies start a supply chain sustainability journey. Primary among them is to ensure compliance with laws and regulations and to adhere to and support international principles for sustainable business conduct. In addition, companies are increasingly taking actions that result in better social, economic and environmental impacts because society expects this." More and more, companies are publicizing their efforts to increase sustainability, a move that is both attracting customers and boosting brand equity. General * 2016 Mills, for example, announced its goal to sustainably source 100 percent of its top 10 ingredients by 2020. For the global food giant, this equates to over 50 percent of its raw ingredients sourced from suppliers of all sizes in dozens of countries. Though the progress is slow-of the 10 ingredients, only palm oil had reached 100 percent sustainability as of March 2015-the brand discloses its successes and struggles on its journey to sustainability through blog posts and the company website. Starting on the path to sustainability First, a company must identify its key values related to sustainability. Tara Norton, director of supply chain sustainability for the global consultancy group Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), says, "It's important to understand what your business means by sustainable, and how this definition applies across your range of diverse categories of spending. When BSR talks about 'sustainable' supply chains, we define this as inclusive, resilient, transparent supply chains. Once you've defined what sustainability means to your business, consider how this can be applied across your different areas of spending, and through the whole procurement lifecycle." For example, a wholesale coffee company might define supply chain

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MHI Solutions - Volume 3, Issue 5

CEO Update
Ensuring Supply Chain Supplier Sustainability and Transparency
Energy Savings in the Supply Chain
The Future is Now
The Internet of Things: Connecting Supply Chains to Sustainability
Sustainable Supply Chains Requires Effective Supply Management Capabilities
The Changing Face of the Supply Chain: Under 35 and on the Rise
Building a Sustainable Supply Chain Workforce
Industry Focus: Apparel
MODEX 2016 Preview
Industry Trends
Economic Market Analysis
“It was the coolest thing I’ve ever seen!”
Safer Handling
Solutions Group Update
Fulfillment Update
Solutions Spotlight
Scholarship Winners: Where Are They Now?
MHI News
Index of Advertisers

MHI Solutions - Volume 3, Issue 5