Environment Social Governance

The business activities of Conaxess Trade Group are built on a foundation of corporate social responsibility, ethical behaviour, and an understanding of our social and environmental responsibilities.

Conaxess Trade Group has embedded social, environmental and corporate governance (ESG) values firmly within its corporate strategy. We have established a value-oriented corporate culture in which our corporate objectives and our commitment to the community are strategically linked. For us, corporate social responsibility (CSR) means the worldwide social responsibility of the company as part of the community and CSR is closely linked to the goal of sustainable business.

Focussing on ESG is an important part of building value

The Conaxess Trade Group believes that focussing on sustainability is an important part of building lasting value. Sustainability plays a vital role in combining business success with ESG factors. Therefore, Conaxess incorporates ESG topics in its business activities on an ongoing basis and embeds sustainability aspects into its core offering. We are making efforts to improve on all three aspects of sustainability (environmental, social, good governance) for the benefit of our stakeholders and society.

The Group CFO, Jacob Schilling, is in charge of ESG for the Conaxess Trade Group.

Our compass: The Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact

The world’s largest sustainability initiative

An important component of Conaxess Trade’s sustainability orientation is its adherence to the UN Global Compact framework, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative. The Global Compact is a challenge to companies to align their strategies and operating activities along globally valid principles of human and labour rights, environmental sustainability, and anti-corruption initiatives.

At Conaxess Trade we are convinced that long-term business success is possible only when we operate in a responsible manner. Hence, we are aligned with the UN Global Compact and use it as a compass for our ESG activities.

The Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact

The Ten Principles of the United Nations Global Compact are derived from: the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Labour Organization’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and the United Nations Convention Against Corruption

As a supporter of the UN Global Compact, Conaxess Trade Group is committed to upholding the following values and principles:

Human Rights

Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and
Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.

Labour

Principle 3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;
Principle 4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour;
Principle 5: the effective abolition of child labour; and
Principle 6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.

Environment

Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;
Principle 8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and
Principle 9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.

Anti-Corruption

Principle 10: Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery

Conaxess Trade’s Materiality Analysis and ESG Topics






Material ESG Topics

In February 2022 Conaxess Trade conducted a new ESG materiality analysis. This included surveys of employees in different entities (Nordics, Austria/Switzerland), interviews with management and an extensive benchmark analysis.

Through this analysis we identified the main environmental, social and governance topics and are working on implementing them in the Conaxess Trade Group.

Please find our focus topics in the diagram

Stakeholder Dialogue

Conaxess Trade considers the communication with its stakeholders as a cornerstone of its corporate social responsibility approach. As Conaxess Trade has direct impact on the environment and society, it makes us accountable to all our stakeholders.

We consider employees, customers, suppliers, investors, creditors and authorities as our key stakeholder groups. With all stakeholder groups we engage in a regular dialogue. The feedback of the stakeholders helps us to identify additional relevant topics for the company and to improve our ESG approach. Conaxess Trade intends to intensify the communication especially with employees (additional structured feedback), customers (sustainability aspects of products) and suppliers (new code of conducts).

Our ESG focus

Environment

We aim to reduce the impact of our business activities on the environment through ecologically responsible actions and careful processes. We intend to keep the environmental impact as low as possible and thus to permanently increase the contribution to environmental protection. Consequently “Protecting the Environment” is included in our code of conduct. All employees are obliged to minimise the use of resources and the adverse impact on environment.

Energy consumption and GHG emission

Central targets for the company are the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (mitigation) and adaptation to the already existing and incoming effects of climate change, derived from the first two EU taxonomy environmental goals (“climate protection” and “adaptation to climate change”). Conaxess Trade seeks to actively contribute towards limiting global warming and achieving the goals set out in Paris Climate Agreement. For this purpose, the company follows a strategic approach based on the principle of “avoid”  GHG emission before “reduce” before “compensate”.

Environmentally friendly mobility is, besides supporting the supply chain to reduce (non-renewable) energy consumption, an area Conaxess Trade contributes to the efforts against global warming. We introduced several measures to reduce GHG emission in the fields of goods transportation, flight reduction, using public transport, etc.

Supporting supply chain by complying with environmental protection laws

Conaxess Trade’s most important environmental ESG impact is to encourage its suppliers to keep or to strengthen their ecological friendly production and to comply with environmental protection laws. Therefore the company will implement a new suppliers’ code of conduct in the first half of 2022.

Circular Economy

Transitioning to a circular economy is vital to preserving and protecting Earth’s natural resources. We commit ourselves to the responsible use of natural resources and to the reduction of our resource consumption. At Conaxess Trace resource conservation measures are regularly reviewed and implemented. Especially the further reduction of packing material remains on our agenda.

Green Goods

Conaxess Trade makes efforts to refrain from goods that cause undue negative effects to the environment. According to our guidelines we desist from selected food with excessive GHG emission footprint like pangasius in our fish products segment. Conaxess Trade strives to choose „Green products“ against less ecological and social valuable products. Progress is made here especially in the pasta products segment. We are in extensive discussions with our suppliers and customers to make progress in this area.

Social

At Conaxess Trade Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a core element of the corporate philosophy. That means contributing to society at large, beyond the confines of our company, and anchoring our contributions strategically.

According to Conaxess Trade, companies that understand and respond to society’s needs not only make a valuable and important contribution through their commitment, but also position themselves with an eye to the future.

Material social topics are supply chain, employees and product quality

Our main ESG topics in social, derived from our material analysis, are supply chain, employees (employee development, employer attractiveness, diversity & equal opportunities) and product quality.

Conaxess Trade’s most important social ESG impact is to encourage its suppliers to keep or to strengthen the working conditions, employees rights and safety of their own staff. Therefore we will implement a new suppliers’ code of conduct in the first half of 2022.

Social responsibility for employees

The company is responsible for more than 420 employees, all of whom play a key role in the success of the Group. We therefore want to offer all of our employees a framework that enables them to develop personally and professionally in a way that is most in line with their ideas and goals.

We expect all employees to treat each other with respect, openness and fairness. Managers act as role models and bear special responsibility for a fair corporate culture. To secure our high requirements concerning diversity and equal opportunities we implemented a diversity committee to manage the topic at board level. We make clear statements and commit to promoting diversity, in all its dimensions: Age, ethnicity and nationality, gender and gender identity, physical and mental abilities, religion and belief, sexual orientation and social background.

The demands placed on employers, especially by young recruits, are changing and topics such as work-life balance, flexible working and job satisfaction are becoming increasingly important. Through various measures, Conaxess Trade ensures a good work-life balance, including flexible working time models and mobile working. Employees are offered an open corporate culture geared to teamwork and receive additional benefits such as health insurance. Conaxess Trade also supports the professional development and upskilling of its employees.

Product quality & security

The company complies will all local standards regarding the quality and security of products we trade. Conaxess only deals with products who fulfil all standards of the food and health authorities. We are in close contact with the responsible authorities in the Nordics as well as in Austria and Switzerland.

Governance

Conaxess Trade has established a comprehensive Code of Conduct covering topics like data protection, anti-money laundering, fair competition, insider information, anti-corruption, receiving gifts and conflict of interests.

Data protection & security key governance topic

The company’s material governance topics are anti-corruption and data protection/security. Conaxess Trade undertakes to respect any applicable national data protection legislation, including the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR, Regulation 2016/679). Conaxess Trade has introduced a huge set of data protection and security guidelines to protect its customers, suppliers, employees and the company, as well as guidelines for procedures that must be followed in case of personal data breaches.

Anti-corruption, prohibition of gifts

Conaxess Trade is committed to the international fight against anti-corruption and money laundering & terrorism financing. As part of this effort, Conaxess Trade respects the 4th anti money laundering directive.

At Conaxess Trade, we do not accept, offer or receive gifts, payments, invitations or services, which could reasonably be assumed to influence business related transactions beyond the scope of usual business hospitality or are forbidden by law.

Lobbying and political party donations

Conaxess Trade advocates that its employees do not engage in political lobbying on behalf of the individual companies in the Group, either in the country where they are located or abroad. Furthermore, no persons or organizations are commissioned to lobby government representatives, authorities or political organizations. The company supports the introduction of transparency rules (e.g. lobbying registers) in the political systems in which companies pursue their interests.

Conaxess Trade does not make any donations to political parties, politicians or candidates for political office.

Conaxess Trade’s ESG Roadmap

The company has started initiatives to improve the ESG setup in all its sustainability areas (environment, social, governance). Our main focus is to strengthen our supply chain approach. A new code of conduct for our suppliers is under development and should be introduced in the second half of 2022.

Moreover, employer attractiveness and diversity are focus areas where new guidelines should be implemented 2022. This supports our approach of staying an attractive employer for all employees regardless of origin, gender, age or religion.

Conaxess Trade seeks to actively contribute towards limiting global warming and reaching the goals set out in Paris Climate Agreement. For Conaxess Trade we plan a risk assessment based on the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) to capture the impact of climate change. This includes the risks emerging from climate change (physical risks), as well as risks resulting from the transition to a climate-friendly economy (transitory risks).