A product can only be as sustainable as the sum of its individual components. Covestro therefore focuses on shaping the business relationships it has along its supply chain in accordance with environmental, social and ethical standards.
For us, it is key that we not only act and produce in a sustainable manner ourselves but also ensure that our standards are adhered to by our suppliers. Our aim is to ensure that all our suppliers can verifiably meet our sustainability requirements by 2025. After all, only if the entire value chain is rooted in the same foundations we can create truly sustainable materials, products and solutions.

When choosing potential and existing suppliers, it is not just economic factors and sustainable products alone that are important to us. Environmental, social and corporate governance standards (ESG for short) also play an important role. Covestro has therefore set up a code of conduct for its suppliers entitled “Supplier Code of Conduct”  that outlines the key basis underlying our cooperation. Covestro expects its suppliers to respect and implement these principles. The code is derived from the principles of the UN Global Compact, the Responsible Care Initiative and Covestro’s position on human rights, and is integrated into our ordering systems and contracts across the group.

The code of conduct for suppliers in a nutshell

Ethics
In order to exercise social responsibility, suppliers are expected to act ethically and with integrity.

Interaction with employees
Suppliers are expected to protect their workers’ human rights and treat them fairly and respectfully in their own company.

Health protection, safety, environmental protection and quality
Suppliers are expected to ensure a safe and healthy working environment in their company as well as safe and healthy company premises if applicable. They are also expected to act in a manner that proves their environmental awareness and saves resources as well as integrate quality management into their business processes.

Management systems
Suppliers are expected to introduce management systems in their company that support adherence to applicable laws and promote continuous improvements with regard to the expectations outlined in the code of conduct.

 

For us, ensuring that our supply chain adheres to our sustainability standards is a key factor of the value creation chain. We have therefore established a four-step process that improves sustainability practices within the supply chain. 

Four-step process for a sustainable supply chain

1. Raising awareness
Our expectations in the fields of ethics, interaction with employees, HSEQ (Health, Safety, Environment and Quality) and management systems are defined in our code of conduct for suppliers.  This code of conduct is made available to all Covestro suppliers.

2. Selection of suppliers
Selecting suppliers in terms of sustainability ratings is carried out based on assessing a combination of country and material risks as well as strategic importance in line with the Covestro corporate aims. 

3. Evaluation of sustainability achievements
The sustainability rating of the selected suppliers is determined by external, independent and TfS-accredited auditing companies on site, or online by EcoVadis , an external supplier of a web-based platform for sustainability ratings.

4. Supplier development
All ratings and audit results are carefully analyzed and documented. If there are failings, we develop improvement measures together with our suppliers in order to guarantee adherence to social, ethical and environmental standards in future.