“The Call for Collective Action Across Supply Chains” provides evidence that the act of integrating sustainability into every decision and process in supply chains helps companies avoid risks to their bottom lines and creates more sustainable products for the environment
July 19, 2017, Scottsdale, AZ – The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) released its 2017 Impact Report, “The Call for Collective Action Across Supply Chains”, online today showcasing data and case studies that confirm that when suppliers integrate sustainability measurement, tools, and practices into their supply chains, they create more sustainable consumer products and avoid risks to their bottom lines. The 2017 Impact Report is presented fully online with case studies to be published throughout the rest of the year.
Over 2,000 suppliers used TSC category sustainability surveys to report their progress to retail buyers, an increase in 25 percent from the year before. These suppliers represent over $200 billion in sales to their retail partners.
Supplier engagement has not only increased, but 40% of suppliers surveyed replied positively that they had taken action to improve their sustainability survey scores. These actions by suppliers include creating internal data collection and communication systems, engaging suppliers, changed products or processes, or have started communicating publicly about their sustainability efforts.
The 2017 Impact Report also dives into why almost 40% of suppliers often answer “We are Unable to Determine at this Time” to many sustainability survey questions. This shows that suppliers are not afraid to say they do not have the data to answer, and that they want to go on record that they plan to obtain the data in future years. To have more suppliers begin to fill out surveys, even with this answer, shows that there is gaining momentum for more companies to begin their sustainability journey.
TSC Chief Executive Euan Murray states, “This year has seen an unprecedented increase in the implementation of our work. The heart of what TSC does is harness the demand signal from retailers, brands, and other major purchasers to super-charge the implementation of sustainability improvements right across the value chain. If done right, a collective-action model can make rapid, marketing-changing improvements to unlock growth.”
Together, TSC, our members, and our partners can help and support suppliers to improve their sustainability scores and change the way they report them. Some already are making gains, others haven’t started yet. It is the call for collective action from retailers, suppliers, manufacturer, NGOs, and everyone involved in creating more sustainable consumer products that will help create real changes to these charts, bringing impact at scale to a system already set in motion.
Roian Atwood, Director of Sustainability at Wrangler, said, “Wrangler has used TSC’s science and KPIs to engage our supply chain to understand each individual supplier’s social and environmental performance. This increased transparency allows us to identify improvement opportunities and take action working with individual suppliers to improve their performance. We are also able to confer with our peers and colleagues on regions that are in need of additional attention. This cross collaboration is extremely beneficial to us and something that enjoy participating in.”
“TSC’s ability to bring together key influencers to explore best practices and initiate collaborative action on a wide range of product sustainability hotspots has brought positive change to the cleaning products industry’s performance in sustainability,” stated Melissa Grande, Associate Director, Sustainability Initiatives, at the American Cleaning Institute.
In 2016, TSC published their very first Impact Report called “Greening the Global Supply Chains: From Blind Spots to Hotspots to Action”. The report showcased a consistent, science-based measurement and reporting system that can serve as an important barometer for the entire consumer goods industry globally. It was vetted by more than 100 diverse stakeholders to assist both manufacturers and retailers in improving transparency and making progress towards their goals for addressing key environmental and social impacts within their product supply chains. Their first impact report covered both the benefit and the environmental cost of producing consumer goods for a growing population. The full 2017 impact report can be found here: www.sustainabilityconsortium.org/impact/impact-report/.
The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) is a global organization dedicated to improving the sustainability of consumer products. Our members and partners include manufacturers, retailers, suppliers, service providers, NGOs, civil society organizations, governmental agencies and academics. Each member brings valuable perspectives and expertise. TSC convenes our diverse stakeholders to work collaboratively to build science-based decision tools and solutions that address sustainability issues that are materially important throughout a product’s supply chain and lifecycle. TSC also offers a portfolio of services to help drive effective implementation. Our mission is to use the best sustainability science to help companies make the everyday products we use better and more sustainable. The Sustainability Consortium has more than 100 members and there are over 2,000 users of TSC tools worldwide; it convenes more than 200 global organizations annually over an average of 75 networking opportunities. Formed in 2009, TSC is jointly administered by Arizona State University and the University of Arkansas. It also has a European office at Wageningen University and Research, and a Chinese office in Tianjin, China. For more information visit www.sustainabilityconsortium.org.
Director of Marketing, Communication and Development
The Sustainability Consortium