There is a growing requirement for product suppliers to scrutinise and manage not just their own company’s environmental, social and safety performance, but also that of their supply chain – a highly complex task for most, but necessary if they are to manage and address risk adequately.
The Vinyl Council of Australia took steps 16 years ago to start educating and guiding the local vinyl, or PVC, industry to become stewards of their products through the whole product life cycle and is delighted to announce that a record 17 companies have achieved PVC Stewardship Excellence this year.
This means these companies achieved perfect scores in compliance with a set of stringent criteria related to the production and supply of their vinyl-related products in 2017.
Launched in 2002, the Australian PVC Stewardship Program binds Signatories to continuous improvement in the environmental footprint of their products, whether they manufacture locally or source product from overseas. In fact, the PVC supply chain for all companies in Australia is global, since local manufacturers must import the resin raw material.
This sets particular challenges for Signatories in obtaining information from overseas suppliers related to the production of the raw materials they source or supply. Importers and distributors of finished products are required to engage with their entire value chain overseas to secure the necessary data and information to demonstrate compliance with the Program.
The Program requires Signatories to report annually against the criteria; each company’s performance is measured and benchmarked against the industry. All of the Signatories in 2017 achieved at compliance with at least half of the commitments relevant to their business, and over three quarters achieved a compliance rate of at least 80 percent. The stewardship commitments and targets relate to:
• Best Practice Manufacturing, including raw material sourcing
• Safe and Sustainable Use of Additives
• Energy and Greenhouse Gas Emissions of PVC product manufacturers
• Resource Efficiency and
• Transparency and Engagement.
The Vinyl Council’s PVC Stewardship Manager, Ms Laveen Dhillon congratulated the 17 companies. “All have excelled, but ten of this year’s Excellence Award recipients are receiving this award for the first time,” she explained, “including two Signatories who only joined the program in 2017.”
“These Signatories worked with the Vinyl Council to map out their entire supply chain so as to address relevant program commitments. All the Award recipients should be recognised as industry leaders who have worked in collaboration with their supply chains to meet and exceed program goals” Laveen said.
Signatories are required to review their product supply chain and verify that they or their upstream suppliers meet the environmental, health and safety standards set by the Program for raw material sourcing, use of recyclate, as well as meet local manufacturing.
Laveen explained: “Transparency through the supply chain is essential to improve efficiency, reduce impact and track the practices of suppliers. One Signatory reported finding that communication and credibility among its suppliers has improved each year, as it has repeatedly requested stewardship information. We hope transparency and engagement continues to improve in this way.”
Award recipients are recognised at an industry Awards Dinner and receive the 2017-18 PVC Stewardship Excellence licence mark.
Winners of the 2017 Excellence in PVC Stewardship Awards include:
Australian Plastic Profiles,
Australian Vinyls Corporation
Formosa Plastics Corporation, Taiwan
Iplex Pipelines Australia
PT Asahimas Chemical, Indonesia
RBM Plastics Extrusions (new signatory in 2017)
Serge Ferrari (new signatory in 2017)
Sun Ace Australia
Speciality Polymers and Chemicals
Information on the Program
The PVC Stewardship Program, now in its 16th year, is well supported by the Australian vinyl industry. In 2017, a record number from the vinyl value chain (44 companies) committed to meet measurable targets and obligations that reduce the environmental footprint of PVC products in Australia, whether manufactured here or overseas.
Signatories to the program are from all parts of the value chain including resin producers, raw material manufacturers and suppliers, trading companies, product manufacturers and distributors and recyclers.
The program was recently recognised by an independent product stewardship consultant, as being one of the longest standing product stewardship programs in Australia and one of the few with a full life cycle approach. It was found to be leading in areas such as its life cycle approach, specific and measurable commitments, transparency and focus on continuous improvement.
For the 2017 Progress Report, Ernst & Young conducted limited assurance in relation to verifying the data submissions of ten reporting companies and the annual report.