We believe that in order to mainstream the sustainability efforts of our industry and to achieve long-term and stable positive impact within the factories and communities we operate in, it is absolutely necessary to collaborate with our industry peers.
While in most cases we may be able to influence our direct contract partners at the first tier of the supply chain – at least during the time of our collaboration – our influence is already declining at the second tier of subcontractors and component suppliers. At the material supplier level, PUMA is typically neither a direct customer of the fabric mills or tanneries, nor the most important buyer.
Therefore, we have placed a large emphasis on industry alignment and collaboration and where feasible try to support existing industry initiatives.
We also believe that to make the overall system more efficient, individual industry organizations need to align with others working in the same field, ideally converging their tools or at least harmonizing their systems.
Examples of our efforts to support industry alignment and collaboration were already listed throughout the sustainability chapter of this report. The most important ones are:
▶ Harmonizing the PUMA compliance audit tool with the methodology of FLA and Better Work (completed)
▶ Lobbying for a harmonization or convergence of the various existing supplier social compliance assessments under the umbrella of the SAC
▶ Lobbying for the introduction of relevant social KPIs as part of the SAC framework on social standards to measure performance in addition to compliance
▶ Replacing the PUMA-specific environmental key performance data collection with the planned environmental data collection of the SAC
▶ Supporting a convergence of the environmental audit/assessment tools from ZDHC and SAC
▶ Supporting the publication of a joint Restricted Substances List by the AFIRM Group (completed)
▶ Co-Leading the creation of a harmonized waste water guidance document and its implementation via the ZDHC
Such harmonization and alignment will potentially free up resources currently spent by brands and suppliers alike on multiple audits for the same factories, multiple test reports for hazardous chemicals on the same materials and effluents, as well as multiple capacity building and training projects focusing on similar subjects and suppliers.
Instead, we plan to use our resources more effectively on creating true positive impact for our direct and indirect employees as well as the communities and environment they operate in. Our new targets “10FOR20” will guide our work in this respect.