Geneva, Switzerland, June 29th, 2021 -
Firmenich, the world's largest privately-owned fragrance and taste company, has become a member of the Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT), a non-profit association that promotes sourcing with respect. UEBT membership recognizes that Firmenich is operating worldwide according to ethical sourcing principles and has developed effective work plans for its supply chains on biodiversity, fair and equitable benefit sharing, local development, and labor rights.
“Our Center of Expertise of Naturals in Grasse has been a member of UEBT since 2014 and now we are proud to join the organization at global level, having passed their independent assessment,” said Gilbert Ghostine, CEO Firmenich. “UEBT is recognized for setting high standards and working with companies on biodiversity, making this partnership a key milestone for our 2030 ESG objectives on responsible sourcing. By integrating biodiversity protection in all our natural sourcing from 50 countries, we are making a real difference to people, planet, and society, and offering our customers the highest quality, sustainably sourced, natural raw materials.”
As a precondition to becoming a global UEBT member, Firmenich’s biodiversity policy commitments and its responsible sourcing system were assessed by UEBT in accordance with its principles.
“With UEBT, we have designed and agreed on a clear work-plan for the next three years,” added Boet Brinkgreve, President, Ingredients. “Our objective is to drive continuous improvement towards the local producers in our value chains and ensure proper risk management systems across our natural sourcing portfolio. Through this collaboration, we also want to achieve certification for a large number of our critical ingredients by 2030.”
In 2021, Firmenich also became the first company in the world to achieve the newly launched UEBT Access and Benefit-Sharing (ABS) Due Diligence Verification, whereby UEBT examined the system Firmenich uses to comply with rules linked to the Nagoya Protocol on ABS. ABS ensures that the benefits arising from biodiversity-based research and development are shared in a fair and equitable way, including through sustainable practices and collaboration with local communities.
“Firmenich has set clear targets for 2030 on sourcing with respect for people and biodiversity,” commented Rik Kutsch Lojenga, Executive Director of UEBT. “A solid implementation strategy is currently being rolled out by Firmenich to ensure these targets are met and positive impact is created for people and biodiversity. With Firmenich group joining UEBT, it is committing to continuous improvement with a focus on local sourcing practices in its responsible sourcing due diligence system and supplier support program. We look forward to working with Firmenich on this.”
As part of its Naturals Together™ platform, Firmenich builds its leadership in Naturals on three pillars: sustainable procurement standards, collections of certified ingredients with strong involvement at source, as well as innovation. UEBT membership supports the Group’s ambitions for sourcing with respect for people and biodiversity.