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Reduction of our environmental footprint, maintenance of humane working conditions by raw material suppliers, and high levels of transparency and traceability in the production of raw materials are three of the six pillars of the “Sumitomo Rubber Group Sustainable Natural Rubber Policy” which Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. (SRI) has established. The reason for this is participation in the introduction of the “Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber” (GPSNR), which SRI is a founding member of. The GPSNR is a platform which was established in October by eleven leading tyre companies and which advocates for the sustainable production of natural rubber.
The sustainability and the quest for fair production are not new to the Sumitomo Rubber Group: the Group has long made efforts to improve the sustainability of its business activities. The primary focus here is on sustainably produced natural rubber, as the key raw material in the production of tyres. The global demand for tyres will continue to increase in the future in the wake of the development of the mobile society. As a result, awareness of the challenges which arise from the increasing demand for natural rubber must be improved. This includes environmental damage resulting from deforestation in rubber-producing regions, for example, or the human rights violations which are associated with poor working conditions.
Through participation in the GPSNR, the Sumitomo Rubber Group not only commits to more proactive and collaborative cooperation both with the supply chain and with other interest groups involved in production, it also doubles its own effort to achieve sustainability in natural rubber in accordance with the newly introduced “Sustainable Rubber Policy”.
The other three pillars for the reduction of the environmental footprint are unconditional compliance with the International Compliance Convention, improvement of crop yields through support of upstream supply chains, and promotion of measures to safeguard health and safety.