Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)
In 2021, we integrated ESG criteria into our strategy. While we had already aligned with many ESG aspects, we've since formalized our approach, embedding ESG into our decision-making, internal frameworks, and external communications.
ESG is central to our organization
In 2021, we began integrating Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria into our wider company strategy. ESG is the follow-on to CSR, or Corporate Social Responsibility commitment, and the term is being adopted by more and more European companies, in line with evolving EU regulations. As such, although the terminology is new, many of the ideas it covers are already familiar and central to Holland Colours.
ESG ROADMAP 2021-2025
The switch to ESG is a step by step process. Below is an overview of the roadmap we are following.
Part of our mission is ‘to be recognized as a contributor to a sustainable industry.’ This involves working as a co-design partner to create solutions that support our clients in their sustainability goals. Through this, we contribute to the creation of a sustainable society.
Sustainability has always been a feature of our pigment encapsulation technology as it is based on a natural resource. This puts us in a strong position to respond to our clients’ growing expectations in this area. Addressing sustainability issues and circular economy requirements is going to be a key issue for the ongoing continuity of Holland Colours.
Within sustainability, we concentrate on three broad areas: our people, our products and our processes. This focus is derived from a selection of the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs). Of the 17 SDGs, we selected six that are most relevant to Holland Colours internally, to our clients, to brand owners and to our value chain partners. They can be grouped into 3 broad categories.
Building our skills allows us to adapt quickly to changing business needs and attract talent seeking personal growth. We prioritize continuous training, both on-the-job and externally, focusing not just on specific job skills but also on broader personal development. We're committed to employee safety, welfare, and offering equal development opportunities.
We aim to invest 2% of our personnel costs in employee development: 80% on Learning & Development, 10% on well-being, and 10% on charity activities. In 2022/2023, we underutilized our L&D budget, but plan to fully utilize it next year. The EMEIA division introduced a Sustainable Employability Interview and policy, granting employees a personal development budget and access to an online learning platform.
“We don't just sell a product. We have very dedicated, well-trained colleagues who really take care of our customers and ensure they're ready for tomorrow."
Health and Safety
Our number one priority is to provide a safe and healthy working environment for our people.
We therefore train and encourage our employees to report incidents, accidents and near misses. This is so that we can learn from them and improve our processes, procedures and behavior.
Over the last decade, Holland Colours has employed the gate-to-gate methodology of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) to report our sustainability. GRI is a broad guideline for sustainability reporting by NGOs, governments and industry.
In 2022/2023, we conducted a new carbon footprint analysis based on the newly adopted guidelines. This analysis was audited externally to define the most appropriate CO2 conversion factors. This will be an ongoing process over the coming years. In Scope 3, we see that waste makes a significant contribution to our overall CO2 footprint. In our efforts to lower emissions, we will focus on reducing our waste and continue to discuss possible improvements with our suppliers.
In 2022/2023, we began analyzing the sustainability performance of our product portfolio. For this we defined a sustainable product as being one that meets one of the following three criteria while not performing significantly worse in the other criteria.
- either has a lower CO2 /kg equivalent impact than the main solution in a specific subsegment (cradle to gate); or
- it enables our customer to have a lower CO2 /kg equivalent impact in their production vs. the main alternative solution; or
- it supports the increased recycling of materials.