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How sustainable is Burberry ?

Burberry & sustainability


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First milestones, should be better Click here for score rapport: 8 out of 36

Sustainability summary

Brand owner: Burberry Group plc
Head office: London, UK
Sector: Luxury brands
Categories : Male, Female, Kids
Free Tags: Burberry, Bags, Caps, Shirts, Pullover, Suits, Jackets, Jeans, Dress

What's your sustainability news about Burberry?

Burberry sustainability score report

Last edited: 23 April 2015 by Mario
Last reviewed: 23 April 2015 by Mario

Questions about Climate Change/ Carbon Emissions

1 out of 6
1. Is there a policy for the brand to minimize, reduce or compensate carbon emissions? Burberry implements several measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as energy efficiency measures in its stores or the use of green energy (see link, page 19). Source
2. Has the brand (company) disclosed the annual absolute carbon footprint of its 'own operations' (Scope 1 & 2) and has the brand already reduced or compensated 10% of these emissions in the last 5 years? Burberry's total climate footprint of own operations increased from 36,948 tons of CO2e in FY13 to 41,821 tons of CO2e in FY14. This represents an increase of around 13,1% (see link, p.49). Source
3. Is at least 50% of the electricity used by the brand (company) generated from renewable resources, such as wind or solar energy? Burberry reports that 26% of its electricity purchased originates from renewable sources. Thereby Burberry states some energy is generate on site (solar panels). However, altogether Burberry is not clear enough about the sources of supply and types of energy. Source
4. Is all the electricity used by the brand (company) generated from renewable resources, such as wind or solar energy? See remark for carbon emissions policy question 3. Source
5. Has the brand (company) set a target to reduce its absolute ‘own operations’ carbon emissions by at least 20% within the next 5 years? Burberry does not report a general target for greenhouse gas emission reductions. Source
6. Does the brand (company) have a policy and reports on tangible results to reduce / compensate carbon emissions generated from the production chain (Scope 3)? Burberry reports to work with key suppliers to assist them in reducing their energy use by up to 20%. However, Burberry does not yet provide tangible results on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in its supply chain beyond own operations (see link, page 17). Source

Questions about Environmental Policy

1 out of 16
1. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 5% of its volume? Burberry states to implement measures to reduce the environmental impact of Burberry’s three key raw materials namely, cotton, leather and PVC. However, no proportion regarding the total use of preferred raw materials is reported (see link, pages 15 & 16). Source
2. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 10% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
3. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 25% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
4. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 50% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
5. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 75% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
6. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 90% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
7. Does the brand have a clear and effective policy to avoid the use of leather that originates from cattle farms in deforestated Amazone areas? Burberry states that it is essential that all its suppliers keep records of raw material country of origin, specifically regarding natural raw materials and in particular cotton, leather and wood/paper. However, there is no report on outcome of this policy (see link, page 6). Source
8. Does the brand (company) have a clear and effective policy to minimize environmental pollution of chromium and other harmful substances from leather tanning processes, e.g. by waste water treatment or by vegetable tanning? Burberry report to be member at Leather Working and that tanneries supplying 70% of accessories leather are engaged in Burberry's environmental management programme. However, Burberry does not communicate tangible results to limit chromium and other harmful substances pollution caused by leather tanning processes (see link, page 2-14). Source
9. Is there a policy for the brand (company) to eliminate all hazardous chemicals from the whole lifecycle and all production procedures to make the garments? Burberry has signed the Zero-Discharge Commitment from Greenpeace. Burberry promises to 'eliminate all hazardous chemicals from the whole lifecycle and all production procedures that are associated with the making and using of company's products, by 2020'. Source
10. Has the brand (company) eliminated at least one suspect chemical group, such as Phthalates or Per fluorinated chemicals from its entire garment production? Burberry does not report whether at least 1 out of 11 suspect chemical groups, such as Heathy Metals or Chlorophenols can be considered as fully phased-out in the entire production chain. Source
11. Has the brand (company) eliminated at least three suspect chemical groups, such as Phthalates or Per fluorinated chemicals from its entire garment production? See remark for environmental policy question 9. Source
12. Does the brand (company) have a clear target to phase out PVC in their products, and has the brand already achieved a PVC phase out level of more than 90%? Burberry reports to continue to reduce the amount of PVC used in its products, with the aim of replacing PVC with a more sustainable alternative by 2016. However, no information about the current status of progress is reported. Source
13. Has the brand (company) a clear and effective policy to minimize the use of solvents based chemicals in their shoe production, and has the brand already achieved a level of average max. 40 grams of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) emissions per pair of shoes? Burberry does not report a clear and effective policy to minimize the use of solvents based chemicals in their shoe production. Sustainability information should be easily accessible for consumers to make responsible choices. Source
14. Does the brand (company) have clear objectives to minimize the environmental impact of its shipping packaging and carrier bags, by reducing, re-using, recycling and responsible sourcing of packaging materials, and does the brand annually report on these results? Burberry states that 100% of point-of-sale packaging will be sustainably sourced (where alternatives are available), but does not report on the annual results of its consumer packaging policy (see link, page 15). Source
15. Does the brand (company) have clear objectives to minimize waste, by reducing, re-using and recycling, and does the brand annually report the results? Burberry does not report on the annual results of its waste reduction policy. Source
16. Does the brand (company) encourage the return or re-use of garments? Burberry does not report, whether the return or re-use of garments and / or shoes by its customers is stimulated. Source

Questions about Labour Conditions/ Fair Trade

6 out of 14
1. Does the brand (company) have a supplier Code of Conduct (CoC) which includes the following standards: No forced or slave labor, no child labor, no discrimination of any kind and a safe and hygienic workplace? Burberry mentions all standards in Burberry Ethical Trading Policy (see pages 3-5). Source
2. Does this CoC include at least two of the following workers rights: 1. to have a formally registered employment relationship 2. to have a maximum working week of 48 hours with voluntary and paid overtime of 12 hours maximum 3. to have a sufficient living wage? Burberry mentions all these rights in the Burberry Ethical Trading Policy (see pages 4 & 5). Source
3. Does this Code of Conduct include the right for workers to form and join trade unions and bargain collectively; and in those situations where these rights are restricted under law, the right to facilitate parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining? Burberry mentions this right with reference to parallel means for the situation of law restrictions in the Burberry Ethical Trading Policy (see page 3). Source
4. Does this labour conditions policy also apply further down the production chains, at least covering the leather production or the animal farms? Burberry's supplier Code of Conduct is applicable for all its suppliers which includes raw material suppliers on farm level (see link, page 5). Source
5. Does the brand (company) have a published list of direct suppliers, that have collectively contributed to more than 90% of the purchase volume? Burberry states that the majority of its products are manufactured in Europe (mainly Italy) but no list of direct suppliers was published yet (see link, page 13). Source
6. Is the brand (company) a member of a collective initiative that aims to improve labor conditions, or does the brand (company) purchase its supplies from accredited factories with improved labor conditions? Burberry is a member of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) (see link, page 48). Source
7. Do independent civil society organizations like NGO's and labor unions have a decisive voice in this collective initiative or in these certification schemes? Burberry is a member of the Ethical Trading Initiative, which means that Labour Unions and/or business-independent NGO’s have a formal and co-decisive voice within the initiative and are co-responsible for the integrity and credibility of the initiative (see link, page 48). Source
8. Is there a policy for the brand (company) for capacity building at the apparel manufacturers for improved labour practices? Burberry does not provide tangible information on capacity building measures at its supplying production facilities for improved labour practices (see link, page 11). Source
9. Does the brand (company) annually report on the results of its labor conditions policy? Is at least 90% of the brands production volume from apparel manufacturers monitored for labour conditions? In 2013/2014 Burberry reports that 855 audits, visits and trainings were carried out in its global supply chain. However, Burberry does not publicly report outcomes or results of its policies to improve labor conditions at its suppliers (see link, page 11). Source
10. Is at least 25% of the production volume from apparel manufacturers approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FWF, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 9. Source
11. Is at least 50% of the production volume from apparel manufacturers approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FWF, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 9. Source
12. Does the brand (company) implement a policy to establish the payment of living wages at its apparel manufacturers? Are at least first living wage payments realised? Burberry does not provide tangible information about policy measure results to establish the payment of living wages at its direct suppliers. Source
13. Does the brand (company) annually report on the results of its labor conditions policy for the leather, yarn and fabric production phases, including a reasonable overview of the number and region of workplaces covered by the policy in relation to the total production volume? Burberry does not report on tangible results of its labour conditions policy for the fabric manufacturing phases. Source
14. Are at least 50% of the brand's leather, yarn and fabric production phases approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FLO-Cert, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 13. Source