BLOG TOPIC: The importance of accreditation - EcoVadis Silver Status

The importance of accreditation – EcoVadis Silver status achieved!

Dedicated to the needs of the global packaging and label industries, Flint Group Packaging is a business that is continually looking to the future of our industry.

While this means keeping abreast of a diverse array of market trends and needs, including the impact of market consolidation, the digitalisation of the industry, and the push for workflow automation, one of the most pressing trends is the drive for sustainability in the printing and packaging industry. Businesses around the world are looking to reduce their impact on the environment, and as we take a broader view of what that means, the full length of the packaging supply chain comes under the microscope.

To be a market leader, we know we can’t ‘just’ supply high-performance technologies through our investments in material and process innovation. We need to marry our next-generation ink and coating developments with new sustainability benefits. It’s not only about colour excellence and operational efficiency for our customers, it’s also about using new materials, technologies, and minimising waste and errors.

In the latest example of how Flint Group is supporting its customers in transitioning inks and coatings into part of a long-term sustainability strategy, we have received a silver rating from EcoVadis.

What is EcoVadis?

As the management guru Peter Drucker famously said, “If you can't measure it, you can't manage it...” and today, one of the biggest challenges in business sustainability is how it is measured. Without consistent benchmarking, it’s difficult to determine if any meaningful progress is being made.

Launched in 2007, EcoVadis is the most established sustainability rating business on the planet, independently measuring the performance of more than 90,000 businesses around the globe in more than 160 countries. The company provides a common platform, universal scorecard, and performance improvement tools.

To create a level playing field and inherently make sustainability data more meaningful, EcoVadis uses an assessment methodology that evaluates not only how businesses are shaping their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) principles, but how effectively they integrate them into their strategy and culture.

What does Silver status mean?

EcoVadis scoring is created on a 0-100 scale, and recognition levels are based on a percentile ranking. By doing this, it’s easy to see how a business performs compared to its peers in a given market.

Achieving Silver status puts Flint Group in the Top 25% of businesses audited and measured around the globe, and in the Top 21% of companies in the paints, varnishes, coatings, and printing inks category.

In the Sustainable Procurement category, Flint Group places in the top 9% of all companies measured, as well as in the top 7% for Ethics.

Why is this important?

EcoVadis accreditation is important in the drive for a truly sustainable business and importantly, it takes an integrated approach.

Performance is measured against 24 criteria, covering many distinct aspects of sustainability and ethics, incorporating environmental impact, human rights & modern-day slavery, as well as responsible procurement.

Certification from EcoVadis is not easily won, and simple compliance is not enough. To achieve accreditation, sustainable ethics and practices must run the full gamut of the business, with responsible practices displayed at every level of the organisation and woven into company culture. While the Silver status from EcoVadis is a fitting example of how Flint Group puts sustainable business at its heart, it also indicates key areas that the business can improve.

To support our customers and the wider print industry alike, Flint Group Packaging uses a comprehensive sustainability framework. This approach unites our business activities in terms of ESG and propels the company forwards across all geographies and functions.

We have also signed up to the United Nations (UN) Global Compact initiative. This commitment aligns the company’s activities with the UN’s global positions on environmental protection, human rights, and anti-corruption. UN Global Compact provides 17 Sustainable Development Goals that ensure every signatory business targets improvement in focused areas.

Building momentum in sustainability

Following our latest Silver EcoVadis certification – a 10-point improvement over our 2020 score – the Flint Group Packaging team seeks to maintain this momentum. We use innovative ink and coating technologies in tandem with sustainability expertise to support our customers.

For Flint Group Packaging, the focus is on developing inks and coatings that provide industry-leading environmental stewardship as well as class-leading performance on-press.

For Paper & Board applications, the business offers TerraCode. Part of its AQUACode range of water-based inks, TerraCode inks and coatings are material health certified under Cradle to Cradle (C2C). The TerraCode Bio and TerraCode Balance ranges have been developed using a combination of naturally occurring feedstock options that do not compete with food or accelerate deforestation.

Flint Group Flexible Packaging supplies ZenCode, a range of solvent-based inks for use in the flexible packaging sector, under the company’s flagship ONECode brand. ZenCode is C2C material health certified on a Silver and Gold level.

For Narrow Web label applications, Flint Group Packaging offers Evolution, its line of energy curable flexo products, designed to improve the recyclability of shrink sleeves and pressure-sensitive labels.

Flint Group Packaging has set ambitious targets for itself, which will see the environmental impact of our operations reduce as new initiatives are added to the already-comprehensive list of initiatives, addressing areas such as energy consumption and diversity in the workforce.

EcoVadis accreditation acts as a measuring stick with which the business can monitor its progress and better understand where it stands on its sustainability journey, in order to drive positive change. The Silver rating also gives Flint Group Packaging customers added confidence, reaffirming the company’s position as the leading name in ink and coatings development and supply that makes a real difference to today’s and tomorrow’s packaging supply chain.

To find out more about Flint Group Packaging and its sustainability strategy, email us today