Kao Corporation released its supply chain ESG promotion guidelines on its website. The guidelines provide Kao with the framework to work with suppliers to ensure traceability and identify risks throughout the supply chain in relation to social issues, environmental protection, safety and human rights. Kao will be arranging third-party audits of suppliers.
As part of its guidelines, Kao expects its suppliers to comply with relevant laws and regulations, as well as demonstrate social responsibility and concern for the environment. Suppliers that meet these expectations are given priority in procurement. Violations will be handled as necessary, including guidance to help suppliers make improvements or discontinuing the business relationship.
Kao has also classified supply chains as high-risk if they have been affected by serious issues regarding human rights and the environment. Kao is working to identify the risks through on-site dialogue to determine the nature of the issues and work together with suppliers and NGOs to find solutions and make public the progress that is made.
In April 2019, Kao introduced the Kirei Lifestyle Plan—outlined 19 Kao Actions, one of which was responsibly sourced raw materials.
Kao developed plans for 100% usage of certified paper products and pulp for consumer products by 2025 and 100% traceability to small oil palm farms by 2025.