Health and Safety Policy
Finance and Legal Policy
Quality and Product Safety Policy
Novozymes continually strives to be an attractive, inspiring and high-performing workplace with a culture based on Novozymes' purpose and values.
To meet our objectives:
- We will ensure that our values ‘Dare to lead’, ‘Trust and earn trust’, ‘Connect to create’ and ‘Unlock passion’ are an integral part of our everyday behavior and work life.
- We will continuously develop the competencies of our employees and the leadership of our managers, in order to secure our innovative edge as well as our employee capability and job satisfaction.
- We will live up to internationally accepted standards on basic human rights and core labor standards in line with our commitment to the United Nations Global Compact. We will follow the “UN Guiding Principles on business and human rights”. Our commitments are outlined in our human rights and labor standards position paper.
- We will maintain a safe and healthy workplace and seek a good work–life balance.
Novozymes must be a safe and healthy workplace.
To meet our objectives:
- Management commits throughout the organization by driving and promoting a strong safety culture and by complying with all applicable occupational health and safety laws and regulations.
- We ensure that everyone is accountable and responsible for safe behavior and a good physical and psychological working environment.
- We integrate safety into work processes and decisions, including design, operation and management of facilities.
- We provide safety training for employees, contracted personnel and third party persons – only trained personnel are permitted to work at our facilities.
- We ensure knowledge sharing of incidents, near-misses, accidents and best practices to further improve and prevent recurrence.
- We set proactive targets and monitor performance to achieve continuous improvement.
We will work to improve our financial performance by setting high objectives for growth and value creation. We will ensure operational continuity through a high legal standard, and thereby also prevent fraud and protect business-critical information.
To meet our objectives:
- We will maintain a financial perspective in all important decisions and relations, in order to achieve ambitious financial targets and support and develop our position.
- We will ensure that our business is open, honest and in line with the United Nations Global Compact's principles on anti-corruption.
- We will comply with international financial reporting standards and ensure that the financial and sustainability information of the Novozymes Group provides a true and fair view of Novozymes’ assets and activities.
- We will maintain IT security and governance to ensure data confidentiality,
integrity and accessibility.
- We will advance and protect our business interests in compliance with the laws and regulations governing our activities.
We will offer significant bioinnovation and want to be seen as a reliable supplier of high-performing, safe products and competitive services.
To meet our objectives:
- We will seek knowledge of customer and market needs through dialogue and cooperation and convert this information into competitive offerings.
- We will fulfil agreements with customers, meet or exceed the expectations of our customers and partners, and always seek improvement to be able to increase quality in our products and services.
- We will continually assess safety risk to ensure that all existing products and products under development are safe in use and handling. We will also continuously mitigate risk of fraud and adulteration in our quality systems to ensure food and feed safety.
- We will inform, assist and regularly update our partners in the correct and safe use of our products.
- We will develop and optimize tools, systems and processes that enable all Zymers to work efficiently with a quality and Food Safety mindset.
- We will maintain and develop documented management systems that include risks and opportunities, internal and external communication and employee competencies to ensure compliance and continually improve the quality and safety of our processes, products and services.
- We will identify and comply with all relevant legal and authority requirements.
We want to drive the world towards sustainability together with our customers and partners, while improving our own sustainability performance.
To meet our objectives:
- We will maintain robust management systems to monitor and control the social and environmental impact of our business processes.
- We will continually improve our resource efficiency, prevent pollution, and minimize emissions and waste in our operations through regular assessments and maintenance.
- We will set ambitious sustainability goals and targets and communicate on our performance.
- We will actively seek dialogue with key stakeholders in order to gain insight into their expectations and promote sustainable development.
- We will communicate expectations on sustainability to our suppliers and follow up on their performance.
- We will build close relations in the communities in which we operate, and act as a good citizen.
- We will develop biosolutions and make quantitative assessments of the impact of our products in a life-cycle perspective.
- We will ensure safe handling of the microorganisms we use and comply with all relevant biosafety regulations.
- We will live up to the commitments we have made to globally-recognized principles on the utilization of genetic resources according to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.
- We will comply with all relevant legal and authority requirements, and with our commitment to the United Nations Global Compact.
It is our policy to ensure employee engagement and direction, create goodwill with key stakeholders and influence the public agenda and legislation to achieve our ambition.
To meet our objectives:
- We will communicate in an open and honest way, ensuring that our communication is clear, consistent, relevant and timely, and that communications is integrated into in all decisions.
- We will use information technology professionally to boost communication, cooperation and knowledge-sharing.
- We will actively participate in industry associations and stakeholder organizations, as well as in broader international and global business associations.
- We will seek dialogue with key stakeholders and listen to peers, industry partners, academics, NGOs, governmental and civil society stakeholders.
- Within national and international laws and policy guidelines, we will put forward positions relevant to our business to policy makers and other interested parties. When doing so, we will communicate in a respectful and credible way, engaging stakeholders in a constructive dialogue.
- In order to ensure transparency in our outreach, we will make our corporate positions available via our website and annual reporting.
Please refer to the following link with the Novozymes Tax Policy.
Novozymes position statement on animal testing
Novozymes’ goal is to eliminate the use of animal testing. But at present, animal testing is required by legal authorities as a precondition to product registration.
Novozymes uses animals for research, safety testing of products and for antibody production where no acceptable alternative methods exist. At present, legal authorities require animal testing as a precondition to product registration.
Our ultimate goal is to eliminate the use of animals and obtain safety measures by other means. We therefore find it important to continuously address the issues around the use of laboratory animals and to challenge the justifiability of this use. The need for data from animal testing should be questioned case by case.
In day-to-day business Novozymes:
- Keeps a strong mindset on the principle of the three R's (replacement, reduction and refinement) and is actively investigating:
- Replacement of animal use by alternative methods, if applicable
- Reduction of the number of animals used where possible
- Refinement of methods to reduce pain and distress
- Assures compliance with Novozymes' policies through our internal Science Ethics Committee. No study involving animals can be conducted unless the protocol has been reviewed and approved by this committee.
- Requires that our suppliers (Contract Research Organizations) constantly consider and improve the animal welfare.
- Provides appropriate education to all Novozymes' employees involved in studies with animals, and upholds internal standards and procedures to ensure compliance and challenge the necessity for animal use.
- Engages in dialogue with key stakeholders.
Last revised April 2021
- Keeps a strong mindset on the principle of the three R's (replacement, reduction and refinement) and is actively investigating:
Novozymes position statement on biodiversity
Biodiversity represents all living organisms surrounding us. It’s the diversity of animals, plants, and microbes as well as the variety of habitats and ecosystems on Earth. Nature and the natural ecosystems provide humanity with beneficial goods and services – the so-called ecosystem services. There are like food, clean water, and raw materials. There are like climate regulation, pollination, and water regulation. There are like recreation and spiritual values. And finally, there are like photosynthesis and nutrient cycling that secure the basis for the other services. Biodiversity and the ecosystem services are essential for a healthy, sustainable and a well-functioning world.
Unfortunately, biodiversity and the ecosystem services are under pressure due to human activities. The loss of biodiversity in recent years is alarming, and scientists describe the current development as the sixth mass extinction and one of the most important environmental challenges.
The link to sustainable development and the SDGs
Biodiversity is an essential aspect of sustainable development, as a sufficient amount of biodiversity is a prerequisite for well-functioning ecosystem services that are vital for human well-being and sustainability. The conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity are addressed directly in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 14 (“Life below water”) and 15 (“Life on land”), but biodiversity is also indirectly necessary to achieve several of the remaining SDGs, e.g. 2 (“Zero hunger”), 6 (“Clean water and sanitation”), 12 (“Responsible consumption and production”, and 13 (“Climate action”).
Novozymes has embraced the SDGs in the core of the business to increase our positive world impact, and we acknowledge this often-overlooked interrelation between biodiversity, ecosystem services and sustainable development.
Novozymes and biodiversity
Biodiversity is a new focus area for the business sector, as companies try to understand their dependencies, impacts and responses related to biodiversity. Novozymes closely follows the developments in this area and regularly assesses how to incorporate best practice in our operations. Novozymes’ products, enzymes and microorganisms, are nature’s own technologies. Through so-called ‘bioprospecting’ Novozymes takes samples of fungi and bacteria in nature and use them to develop new biological solutions that help our customers improve their products and reduce their environmental footprint.
The United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is an international legal instrument for conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. The objectives of the CBD include a fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources. This is addressed in the Nagoya Protocol providing specific guidance on the principles of Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) to avoid biopiracy of genetic resources.
Novozymes endorses the globally recognized principles in the CBD and ABS. As a part of our obligation towards the CBD, we only take samples in agreement with all relevant laws and regulations in the countries we operate in. In addition, we have stringent internal procedures including a database system for traceability of genetic resources to ensure that we live up to our commitments.
Novozymes position statement on biofuels
Novozymes supports the advancement of biorefining technologies through our continuous development of new biological solutions for the conversion of biological feedstock to useful products, including biofuels for the transportation sector. We support policies that drive decarbonization and sustainable energy. Policy development in this area should evaluate technologies and energy sources on a level playing field and full life cycle assessment basis.
Transport is one of the toughest sectors to decarbonize and no single technology can solve the problem alone. Bioethanol from starch crops, such as corn and wheat, is already displacing vast amounts of gasoline today, thereby reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions substantially while simultaneously providing valuable protein-feed for livestock. The carbon footprint of US corn ethanol is about half the footprint of average gasoline and even lower for ethanol in Europe. This is considering all life cycle impacts, also impacts on land.
Novozymes provides biological solutions for the existing starch-based ethanol industry as well as for the emerging conversion of cellulosic biomass, like crop residues and municipal solid waste, to ethanol or biogas. Cellulosic technologies are being demonstrated by leading first movers in the industry today and stand ready to be deployed at large scale, provided there is adequate political will. Displacing gasoline with cellulosic ethanol has the potential to fully negate GHG emissions from fuel combustion.
Sustainable biofuels are the most impactful tool that near term can supplement the emerging electrification of light duty traffic and holds further potential to help decarbonize heavier transport modes, which are harder to electrify, like trucking, shipping, and aviation.
Biorefining has many synergies with other renewable technologies. Ethanol fermentation provides a clean stream of biogenic CO2 that can be captured at low cost and stored geologically to reduce atmospheric CO2 levels (carbon capture and storage). Captured CO2 can also be utilized in greenhouses, cooling systems, soft drinks, or as feedstock for so-called electro-fuels (‘power-to-X’). Leading players in the industry are already capturing CO2 today. Moreover, side streams from cellulosic biorefineries can provide storable fuels in terms of biogas and lignin, which can be used to stabilize electricity grids as these become increasingly based on intermittent energy sources like wind and solar.
Besides the synergies with other technologies, biofuels can help to ensure a just, green transition through job creation and additional revenues for rural economies. Biofuels can bring investments to the agricultural sector and stabilize agricultural markets by diversifying farmer incomes.
While biofuels are already applied at large scale today and hold further promise for the future, they also have limitations – just as other renewable technologies. Feedstock for biorefining always needs to be produced or collected in respect of people and planet and each nation needs to determine how to best and most effectively integrate biofuels in society. To that end, the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) has developed 24 indicators to facilitate the sustainable development of biofuels. In addition, multiple certification schemes exist to demonstrate the sustainability of specific biofuel pathways.
For further information, please see IEA’s Technology Roadmap: Delivering Sustainable Bioenergy and Novozymes’ report Bridging the gap to a sustainable future.
Last revised May 2021
Novozymes position statement on business integrity and anti-corruption
Corruption has a wide range of corrosive effects on markets and society in general. Accordingly, Novozymes has joined the United Nations Global Compact and supports working against corruption in all its forms.
As a global company with activities all over the world, Novozymes wants to show that it is possible to grow a healthy global business based on values such as responsibility, accountability, openness, and honesty. This way of doing business has characterized Novozymes for many years and will continue to do so.
To contribute to the fight against corruption Novozymes has established seven principles for business integrity with which all employees, including executive leadership, and the board of directors must comply:
- Novozymes neither accepts nor offers bribes in any form
- Novozymes does not make facilitation payments
- Novozymes does not contribute to money laundering. All financial transactions must be documented
- Novozymes does not pay criminals for protection
- The value of gifts given and received must not exceed locally defined triviality limits
- Novozymes does not make financial contributions to political parties. Charitable contributions are subject to various restrictions
- In Novozymes, we avoid conflicts of interest. Private interests must not impact business judgment
Novozymes maintains a web-based business integrity training program, which is mandatory for relevant employee groups and management, and which serves as a frequent reminder of the importance of integrity. It guides the employees in making the right decisions through customized cases and business integrity dilemmas.
All employees are strongly encouraged to seek guidance on ethical dilemmas from their manager as well as designated colleagues in finance, legal, compliance and local People & Organization (HR). Further, employees can anonymously raise any concerns about business ethics and corruption, including possible breaches of our integrity principles, through Novozymes’ Whistleblower System, and they can refer concerns about behavior perceived to conflict with Novozymes’ values and policies to Novozymes’ Ombudsperson. All concerns raised will be handled appropriately in accordance with internal procedures.
Executive Leadership, the Board of Directors and the Audit Committee receive reporting on all whistleblower reports and fraud investigations on a quarterly basis. Novozymes reports on all investigations of fraud and business integrity related matters in the annual report.
Novozymes position statement on climate change
Addressing climate change is well-integrated within Novozymes’ business strategy. Novozymes believes that effective implementation of robust climate change policies and strong corporate actions will help provide a clear roadmap for businesses to drive the world towards a low carbon future.
In 2018, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report stating that to avoid catastrophic and irreversible climate impacts, we need to limit the increase in global warming to 1.5°C. Novozymes is committed to doing its part and helping the world reach the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Novozymes’ commitment to climate change action is based on the following four pillars:
1. Lowering Novozymes’ operational carbon footprintAs a climate leader, Novozymes has invested significantly in energy efficiency projects and renewable energy to reduce CO2 emissions from its operations over the past decade. In June 2019, Novozymes launched its updated strategy and committed to help the world limit global warming increase to 1.5° C. We will do it through by enabling our customers to reduce their emissions through the use of our biosolutions and by achieving carbon neutrality across the value chain by 2050.
As part of our climate ambition, we also have committed to reduce absolute CO2 emissions from operations (Scope 1 & 2) by 50% compared to 2018 baseline. This target has been verified by the Science-Based Targets initiative, as being in line with a 1.5o C decarbonization pathway.
One of the biggest levers for us to meet this target is by sourcing renewable electricity. Novozymes has committed to source 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. Novozymes and is a signatory to the RE100 initiative.
Apart from sourcing renewable electricity though, we will continue to focus on investing in energy efficiency and explore new opportunities to generate energy from waste streams for use in our operations and to share with our local communities.
2. Mitigating climate change impacts across the value chainNovozymes believes that a transition towards a biobased economy that relies on renewable biological resources can assist the planet in being more resource efficient and tackling climate change. We were one of the very first companies to document the carbon footprint of our products. Since 2004, Novozymes has used the lifecycle assessment (LCA) approach to assess the cradle-to-grave environmental impact and demonstrate how biological solutions can enable customers across multiple industries and geographies to reduce emissions. A list of published LCA studies by Novozymes can be viewed here.
As part of our 1.5o C commitment, we will monitor emissions across the value chain and disclose emissions from all relevant and material Scope 3 categories. We aim to reduce our absolute Scope 3 GHG emissions from purchased goods and services by 15% by 2030 from 2018 baseline, and this target is also verified by the Science Based Targets initiative. We will work closely with our suppliers to achieve this target.
3. Transparent climate disclosureNovozymes’ believes that accountability and transparent disclosure is significant to track progress and achieve meaningful impact. Our integrated annual report is based on the concept of materiality, to ensure that our disclosures are material and relevant to Novozymes and our stakeholders. Novozymes’ environmental reporting includes independently audited and verified data on GHG emissions from its operations, as well as estimates of emissions avoided by customers’ application of its products.
We have a strong tradition of transparent reporting on climate-related impacts and we reports our performance on climate change action to the CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project) annually.
Novozymes has joined the growing list of supporters of the Task Force on Climate Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and we are inspired by the framework to guide and strengthen our climate-related action and response, including managing risks and opportunities and improving material disclosures. To learn more, please refer to this document for a summary of how Novozymes is implementing the TCFD recommendations.
4. Enabling a low carbon future
Most of Novozymes’ biological solutions have positive impact on climate change, as they enable customers to produce more from less energy, water and chemicals. However, the sector in which our solutions make the most significant impact is the transport sector. Transportation accounts for about 25% of total energy related global CO2 emissions. Novozymes has set a target to help the transport sector save 60 million tons of CO2 emissions in 2022 by enabling the production of bio-based, low-carbon fuels.
We align our action with our advocacy for a low carbon future. Novozymes actively engages in global discussions, partnerships and advocacy for robust policy framework to decarbonize the global economy with key stakeholders. Here are some examples of Novozymes’ global advocacy for climate action:
In Denmark, Novozymes is part of the ‘Climate Partnership for Life Science & Biotech’ whose aim is to give recommendations on how each industrial sector can contribute to reducing GHG-emissions and reach the Danish government’s target of reducing absolute GHG emissions by 70% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels.
At the EU, through its representation in various industry organizations such as EuropaBIO, ePURE, EBIC, Novozymes supports the EU Green Deal, which articulates a roadmap for how Europe will live up to its ambitious climate commitments and make its economy circular, biobased and sustainable.
In the US, Novozymes has supported key climate legislation, such as the Renewable Fuel Standard (which pushes for higher blended volumes of renewable fuels in the fuel mix) and the Growing Climate Solutions Act (which will enable farmers to participate in carbon credit markets).
In Brazil, Novozymes was a founding member of Association of Industrial Biotechnology (ABBI), which played a key role in establishing the RenovaBio program, which seeks to reduce the emissions intensity of the Brazilian transport sector in line with its commitment to the Paris Agreement.
In China, Novozymes supports the overall objective of the clean energy strategy in the 14th national five-year plan, and advocate for more policy support and subsidies for the advanced bioethanol sector due to its contribution to China’s circular economy.
We would welcome opportunities to engage directly with governments and other key stakeholders to strengthen climate and clean energy policy and develop more ambitious Nationally Determine Contributions as part of their commitment to the Paris Agreement.
Last revised December 2020 - update pending
Diversity and equal opportunities
Novozymes position statement on diversity and equal opportunities
Novozymes is committed to developing a diverse workforce. Ensuring equal rights and promoting diversity furthers an international mindset, helps attract and retain talent, fosters innovation and encourages Novozymes’ willingness and ability to adapt.
Novozymes wants to make a positive impact in our growing world. To reach this ambition, we have to realize the full potential of our employees – not only of each individual, but also as a diverse group sharing the same purpose and values. Throughout the company, we need to deliver innovation of the highest level to grow and stay ahead. As innovation is about new ways of combining ideas, this is most likely to happen in a forum of highly qualified people with different backgrounds, cultures, generations, genders and competences. Therefore, diversity constitutes a potential competitive advantage to Novozymes.
In accordance with our values, we want to build on our heritage as a socially responsible company that recruits, promotes and develops people based on merit and in a way that supports diversity. Recruitment, terms of employment, promotion, and termination of employment are practiced without any distinction on the basis of race, color, ethnic, national or social origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political opinion, sexual orientation, or family responsibilities.
Novozymes’ commitment to ensuring equal opportunities and avoiding discrimination in the workplace extends to all global operations. To ensure local relevance it is addressed in a variety of ways at our sites to reflect local or national conditions.
Our first priority to increase diversity is to increase the number of women in our senior management measurably over the coming years.
Secondly, we want to strengthen our talent pipeline outside Denmark, as more non-Danes in management positions will catalyze a more global mind-set in Novozymes. It will also allow us to tap into a larger global pool of talent.
To promote diversity among leaders in the company, we have introduced specific requirements in our succession management systems to monitor diversity among the potential successors for leadership positions. Novozymes’ diversity initiatives are reviewed by the Board of Directors as part of the annual organizational performance process. Every year, we report the company’s diversity data in our annual report in line with applicable law and recognized international standards.
Employees can file complaints about discrimination to the Novozymes Ombudsperson. Non-employees, including job applicants, should bring discrimination grievances to the attention of the Head of Novozymes’ People & Organization department. Novozymes' Whistleblower Hotline may also be used.
Last revised January 2021
Novozymes’ position statement on gene editing
As a world leader in biological solutions, Novozymes believes we have an obligation to further explore the role of biotech innovation to help people and animals live healthier lives on a healthier planet.
Novozymes finds that used and regulated in the right way, biotech innovation that uses gene editing, as well as more traditional methods such as classical mutagenesis, to improve microorganisms, is part of the solution to recreate a sustainable balance in the way we live, grow food, secure clean water, provide sustainable fuel sources and much more.
Novozymes’ use of gene editing
Novozymes’ enzymes are not gene-edited. The microorganisms we use to produce enzymes usually are. Novozymes also produces and sells microorganisms, in some cases using gene editing to improve their properties or to combine useful properties from different organisms into one.
We acknowledge the concerns some people have on use of gene editing. We strive to be open about what we do, and we engage in dialogue around those concerns and doubts. Our position is supported by 30 years of scientific data that indicates that genetically edited microorganisms are safe*.
Regulatory framework and compliance
Genetically edited organisms used for fermentation or microbial products must be stringently regulated and tested before use. No untested, unproven product should be allowed into the environment. We are committed to using scientifically-sound tools in a way that is safe to humans, animals and the environment.
We support a regulatory framework for biotech innovation, including gene editing. The framework should focus on product features rather than the technology used in the process.
We operate in compliance with legislation and follow any guidance and requirements from regulatory authorities on biotech innovation classification.
Novozymes’ intention is to partner with companies/ NGOs within this field who work with gene editing as a viable method for making sustainable solutions that can help people – and the planet.
Last revised January 2020
*Around 30 years of historical data indicates that genetically edited microorganisms are safe. There are also a lot of well-regarded and trustworthy organizations, such as the World Health Organization, the American Medical Association and The Natural Academy of Science, that outwardly state that there is no reputable evidence to suggest that gene editing (modification) is unsafe.
Human rights and labor standards
Novozymes position statement on human rights and labor standards
Novozymes respects human rights as defined by the UN Guiding Principles (UNGP) on Business and Human Rights
Novozymes respects the International Bill of Human Rights, the International Labor Organization's (ILO’s) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, and, since 2001, we have been a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). Novozymes is also a UN Global Compact LEAD company.
The 6 UNGC principles related to human rights and labor standards, which we support and report on are as follows:
- UNGC Principle 1: we support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights
- UNGC Principle 2: we work to ensure that we are not complicit in human rights abuses
- UNGC Principle 3: we support freedom of association and right to collective bargaining
- UNGC Principle 4: we support the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labor
- UNGC Principle 5: we support the effective abolition of child labor
- UNGC Principle 6: we support the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation
To demonstrate our respect for human rights, we have since 2012 integrated the UN guiding principles on Business and Human Rights into our operations by: addressing human rights in operational policies and procedures, by carrying out due diligence and impact assessments in countries where we operate, and by offering grievance mechanisms to internal and external stakeholders.
We report on our performance on human and labor rights annually in our Communication on Progress (COP) to the UN Global Compact, which is also an integral part of our Annual Report.
Embedding human rights in operational policies and procedures
The UN guiding principles are integrated in our operational policies and procedures. For example, our “People Policy”, “Global Non-Discrimination and Anti-harassment Policy”, “People Standard” and the “Novozymes Standard on Occupational Health and Safety” ensure that the UN guiding principles are upheld in our organization. We require all our employees to respect the human and labor rights and take appropriate measures to avoid and mitigate adverse human rights impacts also in our supply chains.
Human and labor rights are also included in our supplier performance management system, where Novozymes’ screens suppliers and evaluates them on an integrated set of assessment criteria which covers, commercial, quality, employee health and safety, human and labor rights and business integrity. In addition, Novozymes is also a member of the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (SEDEX) platform to increase the level of transparency in our supplier base and to work continuously to improve our responsible sourcing practice in a more structured way, with increased data quality. We are using the SEDEX collaboration platform to engage with our suppliers to address and manage sustainability risks in our supply chain, including human and labor rights.
We require all contracted suppliers to comply with our responsible purchasing standard which covers human and labor rights aspects as defined by the UN guiding principles. In case a supplier does not conform with our standard, we thoroughly assess whether a corrective action plan or choosing an alternative supplier is the appropriate response to ensure ethical performance across our supply chain.
Due diligence and impact assessments
Our impact assessments are inspired by the UNGPs’ Protect, Respect and Remedy Framework. We carry out regular human rights impact assessments by involving stakeholders from relevant functional areas across the regions. The outcome of the assessment is communicated to the respective functions or business areas. Based on the learnings, the necessary corrective and preventive actions are determined and implemented. Furthermore, we work continuously on awareness building and improving the due diligence processes.
Grievance redressal mechanisms
Grievance mechanism are in place for both employees as well as external stakeholders. Novozymes has a global ombudsperson as well as regional ombudspersons in each region. We also have a Whistleblower hotline for employees and suppliers to report suspicions of violations of law, including violations of human and labor rights.
Approved by Ester Baiget Arnau, CEO Novozymes
Last revised March 2021
Novozymes position statement on industrial biotechnology
Industrial biotechnology can improve the efficiency of processes both in industry and in everyday life, by saving energy, water and other raw materials while reducing waste. It is an important tool to create better lives in a growing world.
Biotechnology is the use of living cells to make useful products. For thousands of years, humans have enjoyed the benefits of using bacteria, yeasts, molds and the enzymes these produce, to make bread, cheese, beer and wine.
Nowadays, enzymes and microorganisms are used in the manufacture of a wide variety of products. From low-temperature laundry detergents and margarine without trans fats, to renewable fuels and antibiotic-free chicken feed. Mankind’s knowledge of fermentation and other biological processes has increased tremendously. Since the 1980s, gene technology has made industrial biotechnology even more efficient and made it possible to produce enzymes with new and better capabilities.
Novozymes finds that industrial biotechnology and gene technology can contribute to the sustainable development of society by offering:
- Lower environmental impact through better, more efficient and cleaner industrial processes
- More food, feed and fiber from the same resources and land use
- Renewable alternatives to petroleum-based fuels and chemicals
- New and better products for human and animal health
Novozymes is committed to sharing its knowledge about the potential of biology and industrial biotechnology with the public and other stakeholders outside of Novozymes.
Last revised August 2020
Novozymes position statement on responsible purchasing
Novozymes is committed to doing business with high ethical standards, recognizing our responsibility as a multinational company with a global footprint. Novozymes has been a signatory of the UN Global Compact since its establishment in 2001 and a LEAD member since 2011. Novozymes follows the Global Compact’s Ten Principles to meet fundamental responsibilities in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. The Ten Principles guide Novozymes’ approach to doing responsible business across our value chain, including our selection of, and engagement with, more than 10,000 suppliers.
In 2018, Novozymes engaged with the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex). Sedex is a non-profit membership organization for businesses committed to the continuous improvement of ethical performance within their supply chains and we became a member to increase the level of transparency in our supplier base and to work continuously to improve our responsible sourcing practice in a more structured way and with increased data quality. Novozymes is using the Sedex platform to engage with suppliers to address and manage sustainability risks in our supply chain. Our use of Sedex is an important part of our responsible sourcing approach, as we are working to enhance the foundation for supplier performance and risk assessments by connecting more cross-functional data from our supplier base.
Additionally, Novozymes’ process for screening and evaluating the company’s suppliers ensures a sustainable and systematic sourcing practice. It has four steps:
- Inform: Novozymes has developed guidelines to inform new and existing suppliers of the company’s requirements to suppliers’ conduct and performance. The guidelines can be .
- Approve: Novozymes evaluates key suppliers according to assessment criteria such as:
Environmental stewardship, employee health and safety, human and labor rights, business ethics, and supply chain management
Pricing, on-time delivery, service, complaints, innovation, and credit rating
Product specifications, legal compliance, quality management systems, and audit acceptance
Novozymes monitors the performance of key suppliers through an ongoing evaluation process. Novozymes requires suppliers to comply with our responsible purchasing standards, as well as, when requested, to complete questionnaires and to accept visits and audits relevant for confirmation of compliance with the standards. In the long term Novozymes believes that collaboration and engagement with suppliers will have a greater impact than control alone.
Even with the most effective risk management tools and systems, Novozymes can never guarantee that violations will not occur in its supply chain. If an incident occurs that violates relevant laws, regulations, or international conventions, Novozymes will contact the supplier to develop corrective actions to help the supplier improve its performance. If suppliers are unwilling to improve, Novozymes maintains the right to end the collaboration with immediate notice to ensure ethical performance across our supply chain.
Novozymes position statement on Water
Novozymes is guided by UN Sustainable Development Goals; SDG 6: Access to clean water and sanitation is one of our six focus SDGs. We are committed to ensure water use that is clean, efficient and respects the capacity of the planet thereby contributing to long-term water security for all.
Water is one of the most important resources that has been available to mankind and access to clean water is a fundamental human right. However, earth’s freshwater resources are put under pressure from industrialization, urbanization, climate change and the needs of a growing global population. Water crises have been among the top five global risks in terms of impact since last many years1. Increasing water scarcity and water pollution and lack of access to clean water for sanitation and hygiene are some of the top water challenges that the world is facing. These water challenges are often shared across countries, regions and industrial sectors and their impacts are more experienced by communities and ecosystems at the local basin/catchment level. Effective water management needs a local approach that is informed by science and context and collective action from various stakeholders as actions in isolation cannot alone solve the local and global water challenges.
Why is water important for Novozymes?
Water is material for Novozymes across the entire value chain. The production of Novozymes’ solutions depends on use of freshwater and results in wastewater generation. Many of the raw materials required in our operations are agriculture-based and need water for production. At the same time, some of Novozymes’ existing solutions specifically in textile and laundry enable customers address some of the water related issues by reducing water consumption compared with conventional methods and improving waste-water quality by replacing chemicals. Further, in the waste-water treatment industry, our solutions improve the processes. Therefore, water remains one of the top priority sustainability issues for Novozymes as it presents both risks and opportunities across our value chain.
Below is how we will address water related issues within our operations, the catchments that we operate in and in our value chain.
Reducing our operational impact on water
Traditionally, we have focused on improving water use efficiency and wastewater treatment within our own operations. However, by simply using less and focusing on our own operations, we cannot effectively contribute to addressing wider water challenges in the catchment and, therefore, it is important that we look beyond our own operations and work collectively with other water stakeholders. Our new approach for water stewardship reflects this. We have committed to manage water in balance with local conditions by 2030. This means we will pursue water stewardship through the context-based approach and setting targets that are informed by science at sites where relevant. We are aware that context-based approach for water is developing and the guidance on adopting this approach are limited. Existing guidance have been piloted only by a small number of global companies and trade bodies. Further the methodology for setting science-based targets for water are currently being developed. But we believe this is the right thing to do and will invest in the development of the concept and methodology through participation in the right forums eg: Science-Based Targets Network.
Below are the pillars by which we will ensure we deliver on our 2030 commitment:
- Taking a risk-based approach i.e. be aware of the water challenges at our sites and the catchments we are within
- Developing contextual water management programs for 100% of sites to focus our efforts where it is most needed and where we can make the maximum impact
- Implementing water targets that are informed by science to ensure that we operate within the renewable limits of the water basin
- Continuing investment in water re-use and recycle especially in water stressed regions
- Developing partnerships for innovation in water reduce and reuse technologies
- Engaging with relevant stakeholders-local or global, for collective action on water
In addition to above, we recognize the importance of access to clean water and sanitation (WASH) to our employees and the communities in the regions of our operation. We ensure that all our employees have access to clean drinking water, gender-appropriate sanitation facilities and hygiene at the workplace. We also support community projects that improve access to clean water and sanitation in regions where we operate and will continue to do so.
Mitigating water challenges through our solutions
Water is also the key to unlocking progress in several of the other SDGs. It is driving demand for solutions that reduce water consumption, improve water quality and clean wastewater and this where we think Novozymes existing solutions can contribute significantly. We are committed to reach more than 4 billion people in 2022 by providing laundry solutions that replace chemicals in detergents and enable clean and efficient water use. In addition, our water platform continues to focus on finding new solutions that can reduce water consumption, water pollution and also treat waste-water more efficiently. We are committed to drive innovation in the water sector through our own innovation pipeline and through open innovation platforms like HelloScience.
In future, we intend to collaborate with our suppliers and customers to identify ways by which we can work together to address global water challenges.
Our communication on water performance
We believe that accountability and transparent disclosure is significant to track progress and achieve meaningful impact. We report our water performance in our integrated Annual Report and CDP’s water security questionnaire and will continue to so.
1 Source: World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2020
Last revised August 2020