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Our Suppliers

Engaging with our suppliers

DSM has an ongoing dialogue with its suppliers in order to drive the business agenda on topics related to Climate Change, Nutrition and the Circular Economy. The company engages in joint initiatives with suppliers to reap environmental benefits in the value chain, such as projects in packaging, logistics and reducing raw materials and carbon emissions.
Engaging with our suppliers

Leveraging shared capabilities for a better world

90% of global trade goes by sea, and every day 100,000 vessels ply the oceans. 30% of DSM’s transport is seaborne, so some 40,000 box containers a year journey either between our own plants or to our customers. We have reduced the carbon footprint of our own distribution activities through supplier collaborations and modality switches, but with 20 million containers in circulation, our ability to effect direct change is limited.

DSM partnered with AB InBev, AkzoNobel, Friesland Campina and Huntsman to form the BICEPS Network (BICEPS: Boosting Initiatives for Collaborative Emission reduction with the Power of Shippers) with the aim of developing a common approach to sustainability in the global procurement of ocean freight and the selection of shipping lines.

The network uses the BICEPS Rating System, which analyses the sustainability performance of shipping lines in five categories: communication and reporting on sustainability, emissions and target-setting, improvement projects, cross-modality collaboration, and long-term ambitions. The rating is used as a criterion in the selection of shippers, but also as an encouragement to sustainable development. It furthermore enables small-scale innovators in the industry to connect directly with the shipping lines. Together with the network, we can achieve greater emissions reductions than if we operated alone.

Carbon emission reductions in physical distribution

Since 2012, over 30% of our global spend on physical distribution has been covered by the Green Tender Initiative. The cumulative CO2 emission reduction compared to 2010 reached 15% at the end of 2015, the latest reporting period.

GHG impact in sourcing

DSM considers GHG impact in its global sourcing selection process. Based on the insights of an LCA for the supply of nitrogen, DSM can assess the impact of scope 2 and 3 GHG emissions for each supply option. This has enabled a sourcing process that includes supply guarantee, quality and cost, as well as GHG impact.

For example, the DSM Dyneema plant in Heerlen, the Netherlands, has been able to reduce 42% of the annual GHG emissions associated with its supply of nitrogen.

Process improvement for production of vitamin E

Efficiency Improvement

DSM Nutritional Products’ Purchasing team has been working on replacing an 1% hydrogen chloride (HCI) solution used at its Dalry site (UK) with a more concentrated solution, which will be diluted on site. This obviously has more than mere economic benefits, as transportation can be significantly reduced by diluting the HCI on site, rather than transporting the water component of the solution across the north of the UK. The annual environment impact will be a saving of some 560 tons of CO2 eq emissions, equivalent to planting 15,000 trees.

Sustainable supply chains China

We are collaborating with the Dutch consulate in China in a project that focuses on sustainable supply chains in China. The Consulate General of the Netherlands in Shanghai partnered with two professional CSR advisors, China National Textile & Apparel Council and Solidaridad China, for this three-year CSR project. Within the framework of the project, a Sustainable Supply Chain Management Platform for Dutch Businesses in China was established, providing a training program focusing on topics such as EHS (Environment, Health and Safety), CSR management system, and labor issues. In 2016, 16 Dutch brands and 54 local factories (suppliers of the Dutch brands as well as member companies of Jiangsu Federation of Industry and Commerce) participated. DSM has nominated four suppliers to join this initiative.

Solidaridad website

The project supported DSM’s suppliers with their own SHE programs, energy efficiency improvements and footprint reductions, as well as communications between employees and management. In this phase, approximately each €1,000 invested by DSM triggered initiatives that resulted in an estimated €60,000 in efficiency improvements at the participating suppliers. The five participating suppliers completed 38 improvement projects.