Code of Conduct 2023
To whom it may concern,
Boer Group is a corporation with a wide spread of companies in the clothing recycling industry. Although we work decentralised, we all do share the vision for a better tomorrow. Our business model is sustainable at its core, giving apparel a new destination, but we believe there should always be room for improvement. Being a leader in this industry requires us to strive ahead and set new standards. We believe sharing our code of conduct with our business partners is an important aspect on the way forward.
It is our firm commitment to comply with the legal requirements and governmental regulations in our operating countries. On top of that, we underline the seriousness of our obligation to go for the extra mile and contribute to a positive global impact. The „17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set up in 2015 by the United Nations“, which pursue the objective to make the world fairer, healthier, more peaceful and more social serve us as a guideline.
We equally require this commitment from all our affiliates, partners and suppliers.
You will find the details in our Code of Conduct as listed below.
CEO Boer Group
Boer Group strives to tailor the way towards a full circular textile industry by increasing the amount of textiles being collected, reused and recycled and by ensuring through innovation that textiles are processed into new raw materials. Boer Group is committed to conduct its business in a sustainable and responsible manner. As this is our challenge it is required likewise from all stakeholders we are working with, whether its people working for Boer Group affiliates or external business partners, to comply with the policies in this Code of Conduct.
At Boer Group, we are committed to:
- Ethical and responsible conduct in all our operations
- Respect for the rights of all individuals
- Respect for the environment
This applies to the entire company – we therefore expect the same above-mentioned commitments to be shared by all our business partners.
Boer Group declares to comply with all applicable laws and regulations in any locations where business is conducted by a Boer Group affiliate.
Ethical business conduct is anchored in Boer Group’s corporate culture. All our partners are therefore responsible for respecting and adhering to this Policy. Many of our practices reflect legal or regulatory requirements. We therefore expect business partners to comply with the laws and regulations of the applicable local legal systems. In case they are less restrictive than the principles set forth in this Policy, we will ask our business partners to elevate their business standards and employee welfare to the level of this Policy. If local laws are more restrictive than the Policy, business partners shall comply with their own applicable legal systems. Boer Group has the right of conducting planned and unplanned audits.
Who must follow our Code of Conduct?
- Boer Group directors and management
- Boer Group employees
- Contractors, service providers, suppliers and vendors, or other third parties hired by Boer Group as independent contractors, to provide products and/or services
Market specific ethics
Boer Group takes full responsibility for all collected and sorted articles and will bring them to a respective reuse, recycling or recovery. To guarantee these high standards not only in Boer Group operations, but also in Europe and worldwide, Boer Group is moreover voluntarily committed to all relevant statutory obligations and additional requirements of a certified specialized company, such as:
- Respect the waste hierarchy: prevention, preparation for reuse, mechanical recycling, chemical recycling, energy recovery and finally landfilling.
- No trading and sale of original post-consumer textile goods within Europe to companies that either are not certified in specialized waste management or are lacking equivalent certifications.
- No trading or sales of original post-consumer textile goods to companies outside of Europe.
- Worldwide delivery of exclusively ordered and re-usable articles in the respective product sector only if reuse-based on a Second-Hand Quality-Standard Certificate from TUV Rheinland or the like.
- Complete documentation of all material flows by certification of the final recipient.
Anti-Corruption and Bribery
Tolerate no behaviour that is considered unethical, illegal, or damaging to our reputation for honesty and integrity. Boer Group prohibits any kind of offering, paying, or accepting bribes or kickbacks, in order to influence others and achieve any inappropriate advantage.
Anti-trust and fair competition
Comply with all laws and regulations related to antitrust and fair competition, in particular those that prohibit illegal restraints of trade. This includes both the exploitation of a dominant market position and any engagement in activities such as price agreements, market or customer allocation, market sharing or bid rigging with competitors.
Confidentiality and Intellectual Property
Business partners must adhere to the terms and conditions outlined in their agreement with Boer Group regarding the protection and confidentiality of Boer Group's confidential information and intellectual property, as well as that of its licensors, customers and other third parties. Boer Group therefore expects its partners to respect intellectual property rights of others, such as copyrights, patents, trademarks and trade secrets and to act within the limits of licenses granted in particular with respect to third-party software.
Conflict of interest
Avoid any conflict of interest that may affect business relations. Company employees therefore must prevent any issues which might conflict with their loyal fulfilment of obligations towards their company.
Human rights and labour rights
Child labour and forced labour
There shall be no recruitment of child labour. Forced labour or any employment of workers under the minimum employment age of 15, according to the regulations of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), is not tolerated.
Normal working-hours and overtime must adhere to all global working-hours regulations if applicable. Wages and benefits must meet or exceed legal or industry standards and must be sufficient to meet basic needs and provide some discretionary income.
Health & safety
Provide employees with a safe and healthy working environment in line with international standards, take measures for occupational health to prevent accidents and offer access to adequate health and safety trainings. Therefore a health and safety policy is established to make sure that work-related injuries and illnesses are reduced and overall health of the employees is fully promoted.
Equal opportunity, non-discrimination and anti-harassment
Providing a work environment free of discrimination and harassment that provides equal opportunities with respect to all activities concerning the employees. Harassment of any kind (including verbal, physical, visual, and sexual harassment) or discrimination, including those of race, religious creed, colour, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (including genetic characteristics), marital status, age, sexual identity and orientation, veteran status, or any other characteristics protected by law, is not tolerated at all.
Boer Group is committed to conduct business with respect to the environment and to manage operations responsibly in relation to environmental risks and impacts. The company has an active corporate policy to achieve measurable top-quality results to reduce environmental impact, to efficiently use natural resources and reduce emissions as a result of business activities.
Addressing integrity concerns
We and all our partners are responsible for speaking up when we notice an issue or have a question here. Only then can we address the issue. If questions arise about any crucial situation, or if any misconduct or a possible violation of the Code of Conduct, our policies or valid law is observed, then it is mandatory to report it.
Concerns may be reported confidentially to:
Investigation and discipline process
Boer Group takes violations of the Code of Conduct, our policies, or the law very seriously. Respecting the principles and complying with the policies in this Code of Conduct is a key condition for collaboration with any Boer Group company.
When a business partner violates these policies, Boer Group will try to clarify the issue and find ways together with him to improve business standards and employee welfare. However, we reserve the right to terminate our collaboration in case there is no willingness to make the necessary changes. In that case any failure to comply with our Code of Conduct can result in the termination of the contract or collaboration.
Boer Group is committed to all policies in this Code of Conduct and expects its business partners to comply with these policies accordingly. The ability and willingness to comply with the conditions and policies as set in this Code of Conduct is an important criterion for us in selecting business partners.