Congratulations to the winners of the Sedex Awards 2018

We were excited to host the second annual Sedex Awards 2018. These awards celebrate the fantastic work done by Sedex members worldwide and gives them the opportunity to highlight the important and sustainable work they have carried out across a range of different industries.

Our congratulations go to Mondelēz (USA), James Cropper (UK), Laborlink (USA) and Clas Ohlson (Sweden), see below for more details. The number of entries we received was the highest it’s ever been and we were thoroughly impressed with the level of commitment shown by our members throughout the submission and shortlisting process.

The shortlisted entries were judged by an expert panel of judges who used the following criteria:

  • Scale of impact, including social, monetary and community benefits;
  • Level of innovation;
  • Possibility of replicating the project/programme

Sedex will be keeping you in touch with our winners as we follow their journey over the next 12 months.


Best Example of Continuous Improvement (Buyer (A) and Buyer/Supplier (AB) members).

Examples of how a positive impact has been made within the supply chain through a project or programme of continuous improvement.


Mondelēz (USA)

(Pictured: Martine Croxall, Francesco Tramontin, Jonathan Ivelaw-Chapman)


Best Collaborative Effort (Buyer (A) and Buyer/Supplier (AB) members).

Examples of how a supplier has used collaboration or partnership with customers, suppliers or other stakeholders to improve working conditions or to solve a responsible sourcing challenge.


James Cropper (UK)

(Pictured: Martine Croxall, Julie Tomlinson, Richard Burnett, Jonathan Ivelaw-Chapman)

Most Innovative New Programme (Service Providers).

Examples of how an innovative supply chain monitoring, capacity building or worker engagement programme has helped support positive impact or continuous improvement within the supply chain.


Laborlink (USA)

(Pictured: Martine Croxall, Beth Holzman, Jonathan Ivelaw-Chapman)


Best New Programme Implemented (Buyer (A), Buyer/Supplier (AB) and Supplier (B) members).

Examples of how members at any stage of their responsible sourcing journey have successfully implemented a new programme.


Clas Ohlson (Sweden)

(Pictured: Martine Croxall, Steven Esom (collecting on behalf of Clas Ohlson), Jonathan Ivelaw-Chapman)


We look forward to receiving more exciting submissions for next year’s awards, so please keep an eye out for our announcements in the coming months. Also, you can view a recording of the entire awards ceremony along with most of the Sedex Conference 2018 sessions on our YouTube channel.

Mondelēz (USA) - Best Example of Continuous Improvement

Congratulations to Mondelēz (USA) who were announced as winners of the ‘Best Example of Continuous Improvement’ during the awards dinner at the Sedex Conference 2018. The category is designed to showcase examples of how a positive impact has been made within the supply chain through a project or programme of continuous improvement.

About Mondelēz

Sedex member type: Buyer/Supplier (A/B)

Sector: Food/Confectionary

Joined Sedex: 2006

Launched in 2012, Cocoa Life is investing $400 million USD by 2022 to empower at least 200,000 cocoa farmers and reach one million community members. This effort builds on the Cadbury Cocoa Partnership, which was founded in Ghana in 2008. It’s all part of our commitment to ensure a sustainable future for chocolate. Cocoa Life helps communities thrive in six key cocoa-growing origins – Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Indonesia, India, the Dominican Republic and Brazil. We are helping them gain knowledge and skills to improve their livelihoods, strengthen their communities and inspire the next generation of cocoa farmers.


Programme Details

Cocoa Life believes thriving cocoa farming communities are essential for sustainable cocoa. At our foundation are three core principles.

  1. Holistic and Farmer-Centric: Listening to farmers and their communities allows us to design interventions that lift people out of poverty and establish cocoa communities as desirable places to live.
  2. Committed to Partnerships: Joining together with farmer organizations, governments, NGOs, supply chain partners and communities leads to real solutions and measurable transformations. We know we can’t do it alone.
  3. Aligned with our Sourcing: Striving to ensure lasting, positive change, we hold ourselves and all partners along our cocoa supply chain accountable. By sourcing Cocoa Life beans from farmer organizations, Cocoa Life farmers become active members of the supply chain.

To deliver on these principles, we build our approach on 5 focus areas: farming, community, youth, livelihoods and environment. In addition, we have embedded child labour, women’s empowerment and climate change as cross-cutting themes to support each of the five focus areas.


Child Labour

We are working with our partners to tackle child labour at its root causes with our holistic, community-centric approach. Among our interventions, we:

  • Educate all parents and children to the dangers of child labour and the long-term negative impact it can have on children’s development
  • Strengthen women’s financial independence and decision-making power, which leads to families prioritizing children’s education and well-being
  • Improve farming and environmental practices to help cocoa farmers diversify and increase their sources of income
  • Train young adults in cocoa-related activities and working with communities to increase work opportunities locally

We have also partnered with local governments and NGO partners to build community-centric Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation Systems (CLMRS). As part of the CLMRS, Cocoa Life supports communities with tools, expertise and funding to proactively address their children’s well-being. In each community, our support enables them to:

  • Set up a Community Child Protection Committee of trained volunteers
  • Educate all community members on the dangers of child labour and its long-term negative impact on a child’s development
  • Identify children at risk within the communities
  • Remediate identified cases of child labour with the support of our NGO partners and the appropriate local and regional authorities



Among our achievements, we have, by the end of 2017:

  • Established Child Protection Committees in 516 communities, building on our holistic interventions to tackle the root causes of child labor
  • Established Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation Systems in 137 communities

The CLMRS complements Cocoa Life’s holistic approach and keeps the community at the heart of all interventions. Community Child Protection Committees are involved in every stage and receive the expertise and support necessary to address each individual case with the appropriate solution.

We strive to continuously improve the way we tackle this complex issue based on our learnings on-the-ground and third-party findings and research. As a founding member of the International Cocoa Initiative, we work closely together to benefit from the group’s expertise and exchange of emerging best practices from industry peers and civil society.

“Cocoa Life is our signature sustainability program and is a key element of our company’s Impact for Growth―our commitment to drive business growth while making a positive impact for people and our planet. Cocoa Life embodies this commitment by empowering cocoa farmers to drive lasting change for themselves and their communities.”
Christine Montenegro McGrath

“The way that Cocoa Life is taking on this sensitive issue is innovative and groundbreaking because they are forthright about acknowledging the issue, proactive about seeking it out, transparent about what they find, and are committed to working diligently to understand the nuances so they can address problems effectively.”
Aidan McQuade, Human Rights Expert

James Cropper (UK) - Best Collaborative Effort

Congratulations to James Cropper (UK) who were announced as winners of the ‘Best Collaborative Effort’ during the awards dinner at the Sedex Conference 2018. The category is designed to showcase examples of how a supplier has used collaboration or partnership with customers, suppliers or other stakeholders to improve working conditions or to solve a responsible sourcing challenge.

About James Cropper

Sedex member typeSupplier (B)

SectorManufacturing (Paper)

Joined Sedex: 2010

James Cropper is a prestige paper innovator based in the English Lake District, supplying distinct, custom-made paper products to many of the world’s leading luxury brands, art galleries and designers. Celebrating 170 years of high quality paper production in 2015, the business has been carefully stewarded and nurtured by six generations of the Cropper family and is renowned globally for individual expertise in colour, dedicated responses to the most challenging custom projects and award-winning commitment to the highest standards of sustainability.



Britain’s use of take-out coffee cups and how consumers dispose of them is a deeply concerning issue within society, with only a fraction of cups – one in 400 – being disposed of correctly. Britain’s love of takeaway coffee shows no signs of diminishing, so a solution that reduces the environmental impact of disposable cups is one that is high on the agenda for both the Government and industry.

James Cropper have developed the technology to recycle disposable paper cups on a commercial scale, and have played an integral role in establishing demand for paper produced with CupCycling™ technology and creating a suitable supply chain by partnering with waste management companies, coffee chains and restaurants, to enable cup waste to be turned into beautiful papers.

CupCycling™ is a working example of the circular economy in action and how collaboration between businesses can lead to successful outcomes for both industry and the environment.

High street restaurants and retailers, such as McDonald’s, Costa and Selfridges, have installed cup collection stations to allow for correct disposal. At this time there are more than 4000 dedicated cup recycling stations across the UK.

The used cups are collected by our waste management partner, Veolia, and are processed in a central hub, where they are checked for quality, compacted and baled, before being delivered to James Cropper’s CupCycling™ plant.

With the Selfridges collaboration specifically, we are saving over 200,000 cups from landfill per year and turning them into the yellow paper used to make the iconic Selfridges bags. The bags can then be recycled with household paper waste, giving them a new lease of life for years to come.

Richard Burnett, Market Development Manager at James Cropper, said: “We recognised that infrastructure had to be developed to be able to implement a solution to help tackle the well-publicised issue of takeaway cup waste in Britain. The CupCyclingTM plant possesses the technology to recycle paper cups on a commercial scale and our partnership with waste management companies, as well as coffee shops and restaurants, enables us to turn waste into something much more beautiful.”

“This genuine world-first solution that shows how it is possible to save billions of cups from landfill and give them a second life. The secret to a more sustainable future, however, lies in a collective pledge – so we look forward to gaining further commitment from consumers, retailers, waste management companies, local authorities and beyond.”



  • Since it was opened in 2013, the plant has recycled the equivalent of two billion cups’ worth of coffee cup trim (post-industrial waste).
  • Since September 2017, our CupCycling™ facility has recycled more than 20 million used cups, but has the capacity to upcycle 500 million cups per year, offering a significant solution to the UK’s coffee cup issue.
  • A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has shown that whilst there is no overall “best fibre source” – one that is superior in every environmental category – paper from recycled cup trim and recycled coffee cups generally has a lower environmental impact than fibre sourced from renewable forestry sources or office waste.
  • Investment in improved infrastructure and consumer education – which we’re working on with industry bodies, such as the PCRRG (Paper Cup Recycling and Recovery Group) and CPI (Confederation of Paper Industries) – will ensure a more joined-up approach, leading to a greater level of cups being disposed of correctly and given another life.
  • Following widespread publicity of the issue and our solution, new retail partners have been in touch, both those that want to send their used cups to the CupCycling™ facility and those that wish to use the resulting papers in their packaging. Such partnerships will allow for the upcycling of a significant number of disposable coffee cups used each year in the UK.
  • The secret to a more sustainable future for coffee cups lies in a collective commitment across society – from consumers, retailers, waste management companies, local authorities, the Government and beyond.
  • By 2020, we have the potential to have rescued around one billion used cups.


“With our partners, James Cropper and Veolia, we can take coffee cups – a waste product of ours – and transform them into our yellow kraft bags, thereby closing the loop on that particular waste stream. Not only that, but the bags can still be recycled for years to come. Our customers are becoming ever more aware of global waste issues and I think they will appreciate the story behind the bag.”  Chris Brant, Director of Retail Projects and FM, Selfridges


“Paper cups constitute about 30% of our packaging waste and this is a great opportunity to ensure that the quality fibre used in making those cups gets another life.”  Helen McFarlane, Sustainability Consultant, McDonald’s


“This is a great example to show how coffee cups are being reused as part of the circular economy. I’d like encourage a mass collaboration between designers, manufacturers, vendors and consumers as we all have a part to play in making all of our packaging more environmentally friendly and ensuring our resources are kept in the loop for longer.”  Gavin Graveson, Chief Operating Officer of Public and Commercial, Veolia

Laborlink (USA) - Most Innovative New Programme

Congratulations to Laborlink by ELEVATE who were announced as winners of the ‘Most Innovative New Programme’ during the awards ceremony at the Sedex Conference 2018. The category is designed to showcase examples of how an innovative supply chain monitoring, capacity building or worker engagement programme has helped support positive impact or continuous improvement within the supply chain.

About Laborlink by ELEVATE

Sedex member type: Auditor

SectorProfessional Services Provider

Joined Sedex: 2008

ELEVATE is the leading business risk and sustainability solutions provider delivering improved organisational performance through sustainability and supply chain assessment, consulting, program management and analytics. In August 2017, ELEVATE acquired Laborlink technology and its staff. Laborlink and ELEVATE have a shared vision to incorporate worker engagement tools into the auditing paradigm.



Laborlink leverages the rapid spread of mobile phones to establish an automated and anonymous two-way communication channel for workers, and for companies to receive unfiltered data directly from workers, 365 days a year. Given the sensitive nature of forced labour related questions and increasing catalytic mobile adoption in Asia, Laborlink acts as a platform to hear directly from workers to report on working conditions, opinions and needs. A safe channel for workers to report concerns is vital to obtaining factual information.

Laborlink innovations and best practices to combat forced labour include:

  • Forced Labor Index Survey: Laborlink’s standardized survey detects incidences of forced labour and is informed by sources including the ILO’s “Hard to See, Hard to Count” guidelines that addresses factors such as freedom of movement and harassment.
  • New Worker Insights: Survey analysis identifies key drivers of forced labour and numbers of workers at risk, which enables clients to prioritise preventative actions for eliminating forced labour.
  • Community-based Survey Methodology: To better understand the community conditions that lead to labour migration, Laborlink implements community-based surveying to collect complementary and granular information at the local level.
  • Local NGO Partnerships: Laborlink provides NGOs with data to better understand why workers leave rural communities and the vulnerabilities that exist, equipping the NGOs to customize programming around given issues. NGOs serve as a resource to conduct educational trainings, which are informed by the knowledge received through survey analysis.

In total, the worker survey has been deployed at 50 community and factory sites across India and Nepal, with expansion to at least 30 sites in Malaysia in 2018. Key clients include Target, Vodafone, and Amnesty International.

“Working with Laborlink, we are able to identify information about workers that can be difficult to establish from on-site audits and in doing so identify whether there are modern slavery risks across our global supply chain.” – Paras Shah, Head of Health, Safety and Sustainability – Supply Chain, Vodafone Group



This forced labour programme allows brands and local NGOs to capture actionable information to help vulnerable works, including the following:

  • 66% of Indian internal migrants say they did not receive an employment contract
  • 82% of Nepali migrants to Malaysia say employer confiscated ID papers
  • 46% of Nepali workers visited a recruitment agency to learn about work opportunities
  • 83% of Indian community members say no jobs are available in their village
  • 70% of Indian community members are looking to migrate

In addition, a control trial at factories proved that surveys improve awareness, trust, and usage of grievance mechanisms.

To learn more about this programme, download the Laborlink Forced Labor Report.

Clas Ohlson (Sweden) - Best New Programme Implemented

Congratulations to Clas Ohlson (Sweden) who were announced as winners of the ‘Best New Programme Implemented’ during the awards dinner at the Sedex Conference 2018. The category is designed to showcase examples of how members at any stage of their responsible sourcing journey have successfully implemented a new programme.

About Clas Ohlson

Sedex member type: A/B Members


Joined Sedex: 2018

Clas Ohlson have been creating and selling useful products and solutions since 1918. Covering all things home, multimedia, electrical, leisure and hardware, they have 1000s of ways to help you solve everyday practical problems.

Clas Ohlson works with QuizRR, a Swedish company, which develops innovative training solutions to advance corporate responsibility and capacity building in global supply chains. In broad terms, QuizRR is an effective way of giving training to suppliers and workers in worker’s rights, health & safety, fire safety and workplace dialogue, which is a starting point for driving change.

Clas Ohlson was the first company to join QuizRR in 2014 and has been actively involved and supporting during the development and piloting of the tool.

QuizRR is a fun, scalable and measurable way to build worker awareness and knowledge. The training is based on customized film dramas followed by quiz questions. The films cover real life situations in factories and are acted in local language in factory environments. Workers and managers can train individually or in groups on their touch-screen tablets with plenty of gamification to keep up engagement.

The digital training provides measurable performance data accessible for both buyers and suppliers. Up to date, Clas Ohlson suppliers have conducted over 9000 training sessions in 26 participating factories. Over 4000 workers in China were trained through this initiative.

The measurability has helped identifying challenges and strengths within the supply chain, measuring the training results overtime and making it easier to track progress. The training has resulted in increased awareness regarding workers’ rights within our supply chain, improved dialogue with suppliers and transparent sharing of data making it possible to keep a close dialogue with suppliers. Clas Ohlson follows up on the QuizRR result during audits and factory visits.

“We strongly believe that going beyond audit and building strong inclusive relationships with strategic suppliers will better position us for long-term profitability and contribute to positive change and improved conditions in the supply chains” Åsa Portnoff Sundström, Head of Sustainability at Clas Ohlson 


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