We ensure the responsibility of our products

Ensuring the quality and safety of our products is of paramount importance to us. We take a systematic and long-term approach to ensuring and developing the responsibility of our supply chain, raw materials and packaging. Promoting the circular economy is one of our major objectives.

Product quality and safety

The quality and safety of our products is of paramount importance to us. Our operations are certified pursuant to the ISO 9001 quality management certificate, the ISO 14001 environmental management certificate, the ISO 22716 certificate regarding the manufacture and storage of cosmetics and hygiene products (GMP, Good Manufacturing Practices), and a third-party assured ISO 13485 quality system required for the manufacture of healthcare equipment.

Our laboratories in Herttoniemi and Heinävesi are GLP certified by the Finnish Medicines Agency. Defined by the OECD, GLP (Good Laboratory Practice) is intended to produce reliable and sufficiently high-quality laboratory testing for purposes such as use by the public authorities.

Our products are developed at our product development laboratory in Helsinki and manufactured in Heinävesi in close cooperation with our quality assurance team. We develop our products in accordance with customer needs. In product design, we focus particularly on the functionality and effectiveness of our products as well as environmental and safety aspects. This ensures the safety of our products during their use by the customer and during our production processes.

Target 2020 – 2022 Achievements 2020
Zero recalls of products manufactured by Berner. One recall related to the shelf life of bottled ethanol.

 

Responsible supply chain

Our responsible purchasing is based on our Supplier Code of Conduct. The Supplier Code of Conduct covers topics including human rights, non-discrimination, working hours and wages, freedom of association and the prohibition of the use of child labour and forced labour. We require our suppliers to commit to compliance with our Code of Conduct by signing it.

Our WhistleB whistleblowing channel also allows our external stakeholders to report potential suspicions concerning conduct that violates the law and our Code of Conduct.

In 2020, we continued to develop processes to ensure the responsibility of purchases and increase transparency at the Berner level. We joined Amfori BSCI, prepared internal responsible purchasing principles and gave training about the requirements of the principles to employees of our business areas. We used the supplier self-assessment form to determine the current status of social and environmental responsibility of our cooperation partners, especially with regard to those located in Amfori BSCI risk countries. We will continue this development work in 2020.

Target 2020 – 2022  Achievements 2020 
The social responsibility of products manufactured in
high-risk countries is ensured by third-party audits.
We joined Amfori BSCI. We used the supplier self-assessment form to determine the current responsibility status of especially those BSCI risk country suppliers who do not have BSCI audit certificates. We are continuing supplier self-assessments at the beginning
of 2021 and will, based on the results, perform BSCI audits of our suppliers if necessary
We take social and environmental responsibility
into account in the selection of new suppliers.
We used the new supplier self-assessment form in the selection of a new supplier in one business area.
100% of our suppliers have signed the Supplier Code of
Conduct.
5.5% of all the suppliers supplying to our Berner Ltd in Finland had signed the Supplier Code of Conduct. 36% of the purchase volume in euros was from suppliers who have signed the Supplier Code of Conduct.
We continuously develop our risk management related to
responsible supply chain.
We prepared internal responsible purchasing principles and gave training on them to employees of our business areas.

 

Sustainable packaging

We aim to develop the responsibility of our packaging by using recyclable materials, increasing the use of recycled and renewable materials and reducing the amount of packaging materials used. We strive to minimize the use of packaging materials and we aim to use mono-material plastic packaging.

 

Target 2020 – 2025  Achievements 2020
All of the plastic packaging in our own production will be
recyclable by 2025.
90% made of mono-material (PE, PP or PET) at the end of 2020..
50% of our products manufactured in-house will be
packaged in recycled materials by 2025.
2% produced from recycled plastic at the end of 2020..
We will reduce the amount of plastic used in the packaging of our products manufactured in-house by 10% by 2025, compared to 2019. Plan and schedule for reducing the use of plastic in packaging.
10% of the products we manufacture in-house will use
packaging that reduces the use of fossil virgin plastic by
2025.
We tested several packaging solutions reducing plastic for our cosmeticsproducts. Due to the technical characteristics of the packaging, none of these
ended up being used in product packaging, but we will continue looking for new alternatives and testing them.

 

Responsible raw materials

In our own production, we always try to choose raw material alternatives that are better for the environment, such as raw materials with fewer environmental classifications. We also take the biodegradability of raw materials into consideration.

Our environmental certification requirements guide the raw material choices of our environmentally certified products. We aim to prioritize raw materials manufactured in Finland, the Nordic region and Europe.

While we do not purchase palm oil as a raw material in its unprocessed form, palm oil is used in the manufacturing of certain raw materials used in cosmetics. We purchase all of our palm oil-based raw materials from a raw material supplier that is a member of RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil). RSPO develops principles for sustainable palm oil production.

Our Nokian Footwear contract-manufactured products are primarily made using natural rubber mixtures from rubber harvested from cultivated rubber trees. The natural rubber used by our contract manufacturers is sourced from Vietnam, Malaysia and Sri Lanka,

The circular economy is of growing importance in Berner’s operations.  By-products are generated in the animal feed, food and forest industries, for example, and their uses include fertilizers and biogas production.

Target 2020 – 2022  Achievements 2020
WWe emphasize biodegradability in new raw materials
used in our in-house manufacturing and we will increase
the number of biodegradable raw materials each year.
We started using eight biodegradable raw materials, three of which were used to replace existing non-biodegradable raw materials and five were completely
new.
We will increase the proportion of renewable raw materials to 30% in our Nordic Swan Ecolabel certified products manufactured in-house. The milestone for 2020 is 27%. The proportion of renewable raw materials in our Nordic Swan Ecolabel certified products was 25% at the end of the year.
We aim to increase the number of in-house manufactured
environmentally certified products by six.
We launched one new product certified with Nordic Swan Ecolabel. We had 32 in-house manufactured products on sale that are Nordic Swan Ecolabel
certified.
We will transition to using 100% certified Mass Balance
RSPO palm oil products, or corresponding products, in our own production activities. The milestone for 2020 is 90%.
The proportion of Mass Balance RSPO palm oil in our in-house production was 81%. During the year, we replaced 10 raw materials with materials of MB
quality. Due to the spike in the demand for detergents due to the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the consumption of non-certified raw materials grew by
so much in proportion that we were unable to increase the percentage share
from 2019.
Recycled side streams amount to approximately 220,000
metric tons.
Recycled side streams amounted to 26,000 metric tons.

 

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