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TfS at a glance

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Who we are

Together for Sustainability (TfS) is a joint initiative of chemical companies, founded in 2011. It has developed and implemented a global program to assess, audit and improve sustainability practices within the supply chains of the chemical industry. 

We believe in acting ethically, social and environmentally responsible for our own operations and in our supply chains’ sphere of influence. Learn more about how TfS integrates these sustainability requirements into the TfS member and their suppliers’ supply chains.
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Increasing global interdependencies, scarcity of resources and social injustice require companies to act economical, social and ecological responsible to facilitate healthy growth and commercial success.

In addition, companies increasingly aim to improve sustainability along their entire value chain. Sustainable business activities become a selection criterion for buyers and consequently for suppliers. The social and ecological framework for cooperation along global supply chains is being aggravated.

Standardized processes are decisive to manage these challenges successfully and to overcome the growing complexity.










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As multinational companies we strive for sustainable development and support the principles of the United Nations Global Compact and Responsible Care.

We take responsibility for our own operations and in our supply chains’ sphere of influence to support adherence to existing regulations and to respond to the needs and expectations of consumers and society.

We join forces to harmonize requirements and to manage complexity and risk in our global value chains for the benefit of all stakeholders.

We engage in open and constructive dialog with our suppliers and relevant stakeholders to improve the working and environmental conditions in the global supply chains and to shape sustainable business models.

To use resources more efficiently and reduce the bureaucratic burden for suppliers, we share supplier sustainability assessment and audit data.

We operate in transparency and continuously monitor compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

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TfS goal is to drive and foster resilience, efficiency, and sustainability of global supply chains in the chemical industry.

Sustainable supply chains build upon strong partnerships and commitment of its participants to protect the environment and the safety and health of workers, provide fair working conditions, contribute positively to the livelihoods of workers and communities, and operate in full compliance with applicable laws.

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TfS aims to build the industry’s standard for sustainable supply chains.

TfS has established a standard approach for evaluating and improving the sustainability performance of suppliers within chemical industry supply chains.

TfS assessments and audits are conducted to a pre-defined set of criteria and then shared across TfS members, improving efficiency for all involved.

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Avoid double audits and assessments.

Improve and assure quality of assessment and audit results.

Sharing of assessment and audit results with multiple customers on one platform.

High quality through selected and qualified partners.

Engaging with customers on sustainability requirements and challenges.

Building up long-term business relationships with customers.

Lowering risks in relation to sustainability requirements.

Knowing sustainability performance allows to improve performance.
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Assessment and audit process

The assessment process is based on established international sustainability standards and provides experts’ feedback for both the members and the suppliers.

The TfS assessment covers the supplier’s sustainability management approach regarding environment, labor practices and human rights, ethics and sustainable procurement. To ensure a consistent and reliable supplier assessment approach, TfS selected EcoVadis, a global leader for Corporate Social Responsibility assessments, as its partner and service provider. A typical industry specific assessment is conducted by using an online web-based questionnaire.

The assessments are valid for three years but TfS members may ask suppliers to go through a more regular assessment to show continuous improvement.

Learn more about EcoVadis: www.ecovadis.com
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A TfS Audit is an on-site examination of a company’s sustainability practices. The audits are performed by independent audit companies from a TfS pre-approved auditor pool.

The scope typically covers a single or combined business location such as the production site, a warehouse, or an office building.

Within the TfS audit process the supplier’s sustainability performance is verified against a predefined set of audit criteria on management, environment, health & safety, labor & human rights, and governance issues.
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Our members

>7500 shared assessments*

>300 auditors qualified 

>800 third party audits conducted**

>72% of suppliers improve in re-assessment (spread from 55-75% by region)



* Current scorecards in the TfS shared pool, as of June 2017
** Version 1 (Pilot) and Version 2 until June 2017

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ACC

American Chemistry Council

ABIQUIM

Associação Brasileira da Indústria Química

CEFIC

European Chemical Industry Council

VCI

German Chemistry Council

CPCIF

China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation

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Jun 2011 – Dec 2011

INITIATION PHASE
Cross-company Alignment, Questionnaire and Business Case

Jan 2012 – Jun 2012

BUILD PHASE
Design of Audit Program, Select Platform Partner, Legal Review

Jul 2012 – Jun 2013

PILOT PHASE
Implementation of TfS Program for audits and assessments, E-learning & Helpdesk, Marketing Materials

Jul 2013 – Jun 2015

EXPANSION PHASE
Further Sourcing Markets, Onboarding of New Members

Beyond 2015

GROWTH PHASE
Broadening of Membership Base and Development of TfS to become Standard for the Industry

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Outlook

After the initiation, pilot and expansion phases, TfS is looking to consolidate and to become a truly global initiative, offering an industry standard approach to sustainability audits and assessments for the chemical industry.

This can only be achieved through close collaboration with stakeholders, and in particular chemical associations.

In addition, TfS is developing a Supplier Academy to foster engagement and help drive improvement in the sustainability performance of the chemical industry.
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Pro-active and long-term engagement, coupled with continuous improvement with all stakeholders.

Cooperation is the key to increase impact. Join our initiative!
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Mrs. Dr. Gabriele Unger
General Manager TfS

Together for Sustainability AISBL (TfS)
Rue Belliard 40
1040 Brussels, Belgium

Phone: +32 2436 9620 Email: gabriele.unger@tfs-initiative.com
Online: tfs-initiative.com


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