Don’t you just exploit farmers so you can make as much profit as possible?
No; if they do well, we do well. Providing farmers with agronomy support and an assessment programme aimed at continual improvement underpins the security of a supply of high quality leaf. Exploiting farmers for short term profit would be very bad for our business.
2009 progress in brief
Stakeholder dialogue has helped us in the development of a sustainable supply chain strategy that will build on existing good practices across the Group. We have continued to assess suppliers’ sustainability performance and to support them in implementing improvements. We have also introduced a Sustainable Business Assessment Tool and continued our life cycle analysis research.
Our 2010 goals
For developing a supply chain sustainable strategy
- Develop an integrated sustainable supply chain strategy, including a review of our current measures by end 2010;
- Investigate the feasibility of a common approach to carbon accounting within our supply chain by end 2010;
- Consider the feasibility of establishing an advisory panel of stakeholders to provide guidance and challenge on sustainability issues by end 2010;
- Carry out a water footprint analysis to better understand the risks and opportunities that changes in water availability could present for us by end 2011;
- Further integrate sustainability principles into the selection criteria for our direct materials and machinery suppliers by end 2011; and
- Endeavour to incorporate longer time horizons into our leaf supply chain sustainability planning, addressing long term impacts and dependencies identified through risk assessments.
For our supplier programmes
- Build the global support capacity of our centre of excellence in agronomy, which we expect to be fully functioning by the end of 2010.
For sustainable decision making
- Implement sustainability impact studies to assist our decision making for any major sourcing changes;
- Develop tools and processes to enable us to use life cycle analysis to guide product specification by the end of 2010; and
- Complete joint life cycle analysis studies with at least eight of our supply chain partners by end 2010.
For partnerships with stakeholders
- Aim for less than 3 per cent of directly contracted farmers’ curing fuels to come from natural forest by 2015.