The UK Modern Slavery Act of 2015 requires certain organisations to be transparent about their efforts in identifying and eradicating modern slavery and human trafficking in their own operations and supply chains. Fyffes is committed to maintain the highest ethical business standards across its operations, and as such, does not tolerate any form of modern slavery or human trafficking.
MODERN DAY SLAVERY IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN: STATEMENT OF ACTIONS 2018
Fyffes global sustainability strategy encompasses relevant aspects of Modern Day Slavery prevention, detection and eradication. The development of the strategy included several internal and external stakeholder consultations and has resulted in four priority areas.
The first step is to roll out Fyffes Responsible Business Conduct Principles (‘Fyffes Principles’) which governs the minimum acceptable behaviours required by our employees, contractors and leaders, including the requirement to be vigilant regarding coercive labour, human trafficking and child labour and to immediately report any suspicions of such activity. Compliance with the Fyffes Principles is an essential element in our business success. It will be rolled out during the second quarter of 2019. In addition, Fyffes will make available to both internal and external stakeholders, an ethics hotline for confidential reporting of unethical behaviour by a Fyffes employee through an independently run service.
Fyffes products are grown and packaged on Fyffes owned farms as well as being purchased from various grower partners. Fyffes bananas are also packaged and are ripened in ripening facilities across Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The ETI Base Code, which includes a wide range of labour practices with specific provisions not to use forced or child labour, continues to be the base standard for ethical compliance for Fyffes operations. Our Compliance team continues to conduct and participate in internal and third party audits, including SMETA-type audits throughout the majority of our supply chain. Employees handling compliance have been trained in SMETA and can conduct ETI evaluations maximising data held on the SEDEX database of which the majority of our suppliers are now members.
In the UK, Fyffes Group Ltd continues to audit its Labour Providers using the Standard developed in 2016. In addition, 100% of Fyffes ripening facilities were subject to unannounced SMETA audits during the year. Non-compliance with the ETI Base Code is taken very seriously by Fyffes. If such non-compliances occur, we take remedial action to contain, address and resolve the situation with the shortest possible delays. Fyffes will always first seek a viable remediation strategy with suppliers, however, such corrective action can lead to the termination of a commercial agreement with Fyffes if deemed necessary.
In addition to our regular SMETA audits, in 2019 we will conduct a human rights impact assessment which will include a review of modern slavery risks across our supply chain. The results of the assessment will inform if there is modern slavery risk and how we can take action to prevent, mitigate or remediate them. Such assessment will be conducted on an annual basis to monitor progress and the effectiveness our mitigation actions.
We understand that the risk associated with modern slavery and human trafficking is not static, and we will continue our approach to mitigating this risk on an annual basis.