News from Supply Chain Management Review
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Director | Posted July 31, 2017
When the Sustainability Consortium (TSC) released its 2017 Impact Report last July, supply chain managers were presented with evidence that the act of integrating sustainability into every decision and process in their network helps companies avoid risks to their bottom lines and creates more sustainable products for the environment.
According to “The Call for Collective Action Across Supply Chains,” 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.
TSC notes that 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.
“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,” says TSC Chief Executive Euan Murray. “If done right, a collective-action model can make rapid, marketing-changing improvements to unlock growth.”