Extractives and Raw Materials Advisory Services

Overview

UL helps companies design and implement measures to increase transparency when sourcing raw materials. Integrated with each client's sourcing practices, UL assists customers in the establishment of meaningful due diligence for extractives, wood, shrimp, fish, agriculture and other raw materials.

Definition

UL guides customers in developing policies, programs and risk mitigation strategies to create transparency and promote sustainable business practices in raw material supply chains. Our advisory services include supply chain risk identification by geography, product or commodity; program and policy development; customized research; and tailored tools and training.

Benefits

Extractives:
UL was one of the first service providers to engage with industry associations as well as multi-stakeholder initiatives aiming to increase transparency and responsible sourcing practices in the mineral supply chain.

We continue to lead the industry in providing services within all levels of the mineral supply chain. We work directly with all touch points, including:

  •  Mines and farms
  •  Processors, packers and smelters
  •  Finished goods facilities

Our experience includes:

Mining:

  • On-the-ground assessments of artisanal mine sites in the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Kivu Province. Assessments were carried out under the DRC's national certification framework.
  • Involvement in several mining projects since 2009 such as on-site assessments of varying scope in South Africa, Colombia and Russia (both open-pit and underground mining), and providing input for mining initiatives and standards.

Mineral Processing:

  • On-site assessments of tantalum and tin smelters and gold refineries as one of three worldwide approved auditors for the EICC-GeSI Conflict-Free Smelter Program (CFS Program). Assessments have been completed under the CFS Program in Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa.
  • Acknowledgment as the first accredited monitor for the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) Code of Practices Certification, and the only company that has conducted RJC chain of custody certifications of gold refineries.
  • Working with the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) to develop guidance and assessment tools to be used by auditors for the verification of LBMA-accredited gold refinery compliance with the LBMA Responsible Gold Guidance.

Standards and Policy Development:

  • Confirming that procurement policies and supplier codes of conduct are in line with the requirements of Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act and are harmonized with relevant industry initiatives in the mineral supply chain.
  • Testing and piloting CFS assessment protocols and tools, and continuously providing input to the EICC-GeSI group to improve assessment methodologies and work toward harmonization with upstream initiatives.
  • As a member of the RJC Standards Committee, UL actively commits to promoting ethical sourcing practices in the jewelry value chain and to working with the RJC toward this objective.
  • Participating in the OECD Multi-Stakeholder Consultation Process since 2010. UL was a member of the OECD Drafting Committee for the Gold Supplement to the OECD Due Diligence Guidance.
  • Engagement with the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) on the development of the ICGLR third-party auditing mechanism.

Agriculture:

Our Responsible Agriculture Sourcing program offers a range of services that include benchmarking and risk analysis, code of conduct development, training and education, monitoring, and program management. We have done work for the wood, sugar, tobacco, corn, tomato, nut, fruit, rubber, coffee and tea industries, and have the capabilities to expand into other agricultural products.

Benefits of UL's Responsible Agriculture Sourcing program include:

  • Customized tools and program analysis
  • Internal and supplier training, incorporating local laws and delivered in the local language
  • The ability to fully manage the corrective action process
  • A dedicated account manager to help administer the program
  • Access to a secure online data portal with real-time updates on audit scheduling, audit results, progress toward corrective action and reporting

Additionally, we work with brands, retailers, wholesalers, processors and growers' associations to identify key risk areas, establish monitoring schemes and implement on-the-ground improvements within agriculture supply chains.


DELIVERABLES


PRODUCTS THIS SERVICE APPLIES TO

Apparel, textiles, dietary supplements, electronics, electrical, food and beverage, footwear, leather goods, general consumer merchandise, furniture, candle accessories, health and beauty care, household chemicals, jewelry, watches, OTC/pharmaceuticals, premiums and promotional products, store brands/private label, toys, nursery and children's products

APPLICABLE STANDARDS

Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP) Provides a global cross-industry platform to promote the exchange of knowledge and best practices in order to build comparability and transparency between existing social compliance and environmental compliance systems.
Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) Business-led initiative that provides a common code of conduct and supports efforts toward building an ethical supply chain by providing a step-by-step development-oriented system, applicable to all sectors and all sourcing countries.
Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and EICC Conflict-Free Smelter (CFS) Program Code of conduct provides guidelines for performance and compliance with critical CSR policies. EICC provides tools to audit compliance with the code and helps companies report progress.
Initiative Clause Sociale (ICS) Shared code of ethics, tools and audit protocols predominately for France-based companies.
Conformity Certification for the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) Promotes responsible ethical, human rights, social and environmental practices in a transparent and accountable manner throughout the jewelry industry from mine to retail.
London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) LBMA Responsible Gold Guidance is a requirement for all LBMA Good Delivery Refiners and focuses on conflict minerals compliance and over-all responsible gold sourcing practices.
Sedex (Supplier Ethical Data Exchange) A database designed to capture audit data and allow audited sites to interact with other members of the supply chain to show updates on efforts toward corrective action.
Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) A process for a common best practice guide, audit report format and corrective action format; built around measuring compliance against the ETI Base Code.
Fair Factories Clearinghouse (FFC) Software portal for sharing data from workplace assessments and communicating corrective actions.
Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP) Five-step certification system, focused on lawful, humane and ethical manufacturing throughout the world.
Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) The ETI Base Code is founded on the conventions of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and is an internationally recognized code of labor practice.
Social Accountability International (SAI) SA 8000 Social accountability certification standards for decent workplaces, across all industrial sectors.
International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 Environmental Management System Series of voluntary standards focused on environmental auditing, environmental performance evaluation, environmental labeling and life-cycle assessment.

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