We operate ethically and communicate in an open manner

At Berner, maintaining a high level of business ethics is the starting point for all our operations. We want to do the right thing and act responsibly to earn people’s confidence. We communicate in an open manner and listen to our stakeholders.

Good governance and ethical operating principles

At Berner, maintaining a high level of business ethics is the starting point for our operations. We want to act responsibly and do the right thing so that we maintain the trust of our employees and other stakeholders.

All of our operations are based on our Code of Conduct for employees and suppliers. Our Code of Conduct represents Berner’s values – work, integrity and humanity – as well as the generally accepted guidelines of conduct as documented in the UN Global Compact’s ten principles. In late 2019, we launched a course on our Code of Conduct for our personnel. New employees must complete the course at the start of the employment relationship.

All Berner employees are obligated to comply with the Code of Conduct and immediately report all suspicions or observations of inconsistencies with or violations of the Code of Conduct. We encourage our employees to primarily report their suspicions. Employees who wish to report suspected violations anonymously can do it via the WhistleB reporting channel we launched in 2019. The channel also allows our external stakeholders to report potential suspicions concerning conduct that violates the law and our Code of Conduct. The service is available at https://report.whistleb.com/berner in six languages.


Target 2020 – 2022  Achievements 2020
100% of our employees in all of our countries of operation complete online training on our
Code of Conduct each second year.
86% of the employees of the Heinävesi production units  and Viinikkala central warehouse in Finland and employees in our other operating countries completed
the training.
We will add sustainability section to the websites of our
own brands in 2020.
Sustainability sections have been added in 2020 or will be added by the end of April 2021..



Open communications and stakeholder relationships

Our goal is to communicate on our operations in an open, timely and stakeholder-driven manner. Our communication principles are trustworthiness, openness, understandability and interaction.

As a company with six business units, we have a significant number of stakeholders. Naturally, there are substantial differences in the wishes, expectations and priorities of our various stakeholders. One broad theme that is strongly highlighted among many stakeholders in all of our business units is sustainability and in 2020 the implications of COVID-19.

As part of the development of our sustainability program, we conducted a sustainability survey and interviews of our external and internal stakeholders in the summer of 2019.

In order to develop our internal communications even further, we launched in 2020 a new Berner News newsletter to our employees in all our countries of operation. In the internal communications satisfaction survey conducted in Finland, satisfaction with the different channels increased by 0.3 points to 3.7 (on a scale of 0–5). The biggest increase in satisfaction concerned communications by the executive management, and this was also the internal
communications channel that got the best satisfaction rating. 82% of the respondents were very satisfied or satisfied with our internal communications.

READ MORE:  Sustainability report 2020