29 March 2023
Leather chemicals group Royal Smit & Zoon has published a new environmental, social and governance (ESG) report, covering its business activities in 2022.
It said highlights from the list of advances it made in 2022 include expanding the number of its products to have secured level-three conformance (the highest level) with the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) programme. A first set of Smit & Zoon products achieved this in 2019; by 2022, the company has said in the new report, this expanded to include the whole of its key range of products.
In addition, all of its facilities now have ISO 14001 and 45001 certifications in place, confirming them as environmentally and occupationally sound places to work.
EcoVadis, the Paris-based body that assesses companies’ performance in environmental management, labour and human rights, ethics and sustainable procurement, maintained its gold rating for Smit & Zoon in 2022, putting the leather chemicals group in the top 9% of all the companies EcoVadis has assessed.
Chief executive, Marc Smit (pictured), commented: “ESG is about keeping pace with the constantly evolving ESG landscape, stakeholder expectations and regulatory requirements. For us, it is mostly about making the right choices for the next generation.”
He said he felt it was his responsibility, as a seventh-generation owner of the company, to leave a healthy organisation behind. But he said he was also personally driven and motivated to push for further progress across the entire leather value chain.
“We want to keep on innovating and develop sustainable solutions for our customers to make a positive impact on our planet,” he said. “We feel that urge, more than ever.”