Palsgaard is driven by the objectives of its owner, the Schou Foundation, and the needs and preferences of our customers. We promote transparency and accountability in all aspects of our operations, never losing sight of our responsibility as a global business working in an international community.
Palsgaard A/S is ultimately owned by The Schou Foundation. Being foundation-owned protects Palsgaard from takeover, and provides us with the freedom to consider our business in a more visionary way, focusing on long-term, responsible goals rather than short-term financial returns.
Palsgaard's CSR strategy and action plans are entrenched to 2020. Our CSR Steering Committee – supported in practice by our CSR Working Committee, our CO2-Neutrality Workgroup and our RSPO SG Implementation Workgroup – are responsible for implementation of our strategy.
Palsgaard is committed to abiding by the ten principles set out by the UN Global Compact on human rights, employee welfare, environment and anti-corruption. Our mission, vision, values and policies support these principles, and our 2016 CSR report also functions as our annual Communication on Progress (COP).
Since we aim to work with ethical and responsible suppliers that recognise the UN Global Compact's principles, we have further developed our Responsible Sourcing program in 2015 and continued work to assess key suppliers through this system.
Palsgaard has formalised six policies that guide our activities and help us achieve our objectives. In 2014, we updated these policies to more closely reflect our commitment to the UN Global Compact principles, and to comply with regulations.
Management of our supply chain is integral to our quality assurance system. We need to ensure that our raw materials meet quality and reliability standards. We also work with our suppliers to implement improvements.
Most of our suppliers are based in Europe, but a significant proportion of our raw materials are sourced from Asia – particularly palm oil and palm oil derivatives. Differences between European and local legislation or standards mean that it can be difficult to uphold environmental and workplace conditions throughout our entire value chain.
In particular, influencing suppliers one or more links away is a challenge. However, we have set ambitious targets. Our corporate code of conduct and supplier code of conduct establish requirements for suppliers and partners in business ethics, human rights and employee welfare. We ensure that our attitudes in this area are clear to all suppliers and we make use of opportunities to influence them. We ensure responsible sourcing via our Our Responsible Sourcing Program.
Palsgaard has supported Sedex (the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange) since 2008. The database gives customers access to information about supplier working environments and other ethical issues, helping to increase responsible supply chain conduct. As a Sedex member, we answer in-depth questionnaires about Palsgaard in Denmark, Mexico and the Netherlands, the results of which upon request are made available to customers that are also members of Sedex. We have also conducted the four-pillar SMETA Sedex audit at both our Danish and Dutch facilities.
Our code of conduct specifically describes our attitude to corruption and cartels. In addition to continued efforts to educate employees on our principles, including zero-tolerance of cartels, we also communicate our zero-tolerance stand on corruption to relevant employees and interest groups
All relevant employees have received and acknowledged the company policy, and the consequences of non-compliance in this area.
A guidance booklet was composed in 2015 and distributed to employees and to our external sales organization.
The 2016 CSR report further details our commitments.