The Unilever Global Development Award: Marshalls plc

Award Type: 

Longlisted for a Business in the Community Responsible Business Award

Action and Impact
Demand for more exotic stone types has seen sourcing networks span the globe into different geographies with rich natural resources. As businesses procure through more diverse sourcing networks in countries such as China, Vietnam and India, visibility is reduced and greater risk added to the supply chain.
The Ethical Risk Index (ERI) is an effective response to this challenge. It is a tool developed by Marshalls, one of the UK’s biggest hard landscaping manufacturers. It uses a bespoke, independently reviewed scoring framework to give customers more insight into their supply chain. The framework covers a range of societal, economic, political and environmental challenges at a supply chain-level facing the natural stone sector.  It also maps the results in a consumable index giving stakeholders the opportunity to make a more informed choice on the stone they select for a commercial project.
“Historically, the natural stone sector has endured criticism for unethical practices. But by openly sharing our findings and creating a bespoke framework underpinned by the main bodies driving ethical sourcing practice, we can provide a benchmark for measuring industry standards moving forward, and work with businesses across the globe to drive improvements within our sector,” says Chris Harrop, group marketing director at Marshalls, which is also the first company to achieve the BRE Global Ethical Sourcing Standard verification, BES 6002.