Anti-human trafficking disclosure
Supply Chain Transparency: Disclosure — California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010
We actively pursue growth through leadership in environmental, socially responsible and ethical business practices. Corporate social responsibility is core to our operating philosophy, and that commitment drives our dedication to People, Products, Community and the Planet. That commitment extends to our supply chain, and our suppliers play a critical role in ensuring that we manage our business in a responsible manner.
In 2010, the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act (also referred to as SB 657) was signed into law, and statutes enacted under the Act went into effect on January 1, 2012. The Act requires disclosure of particular efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking.
We are committed to conducting its business in a lawful and ethical manner and expect our suppliers to conduct themselves in the same manner. We have implemented various policies and procedures in our efforts to prevent slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains. This disclosure will describe some of those efforts.
With the assistance of a third-party consultant, we survey our merchandise supply chains in order to evaluate and to address risks of slavery and human trafficking inherent in those activities. This survey forms the basis for additional anti-slavery, anti-human trafficking efforts, including targeted supplier requirements and third-party audits.
We have long used contractual provisions prohibiting the use of involuntary labor and child labor, and requiring compliance with applicable labor and employment laws, in the production of merchandise that we sell. We have a stringent Supplier Code of Conduct (“Code”) that sets out specific standards and requirements for any supplier we do business with which includes provisions to protect workers. Among other things, the Code requires our suppliers to allow factory inspections for contractual compliance, as well as for compliance with laws and regulations dealing with child or forced labor and unsafe working conditions.
In our efforts to confirm compliance with such contractual provisions and to document compliance with the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act, each of our merchandise suppliers has been asked to certify that the materials incorporated into the merchandise they supply complies with applicable laws regarding slavery and human trafficking. Suppliers are also required to ensure that any subcontractor used in the manufacturing or distribution of any merchandise to us complies with the same standards.
Any supplier that is not able to provide the foregoing certification will be required, as a condition to continuing to supply merchandise to us, to submit an action plan to achieve such certification within a reasonable period of time. Those suppliers that fail to comply will be subject to increasing levels of discipline, up to and including termination of their relationships.
In an effort to verify supplier responses and to help us identify areas of increased risk of slavery and human trafficking, we are requiring that our suppliers complete a survey identifying measures they have taken, or intend to take, to prevent these abuses.
We have reviewed the risks of slavery and human trafficking presented by various parts of our supply chain and has inspected the factory premises of the suppliers of our own-branded merchandise for evidence of non-compliance with slavery and human trafficking laws. In addition, we have, on a risk-based basis, engaged third-party auditors to review compliance of certain suppliers with international social accountability standards.
Responsible employees have been advised of our prohibitions against the use of slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains. Additionally, we have implemented training requirements for employees with sourcing responsibilities.
Supplier Sustainability Guidelines
Safeway is always working to improve the sustainability of our products, and one big way we can do that is to look at the ingredients we use. Our sourcing team is shifting our buying choices toward ingredients that were produced in more socially and environmentally responsible ways.
To learn more about out Supplier Sustainability Guidelines, please visit http://suppliers.safeway.com/usa/pdf/supplier_sustainability_expectations.pdf.
Safeway Position on Bisphenol A
Bisphenol A, more commonly known as BPA, is an industrial chemical that has been used for more than 40 years in the manufacture of many hard plastic items and in the linings of metal cans. It is used in some packaging and utensils for food and beverages such as plastic water bottles and infant bottles, children’s drinking cups, and hard plastic dishes. In January 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states: “… studies employing standardized toxicity tests have thus far supported the safety of current low levels of human exposure to BPA. However, on the basis of results from recent studies using novel approaches to test for subtle effects, both the National Toxicology Program at the National Institutes of Health and the FDA have some concern about the potential effects of BPA” on the health of infants and young children. The FDA continues to conduct in-depth studies regarding risks related to BPA. However, consumers still have legitimate questions about the safety of BPA.
While Safeway’s private label products are compliant with FDA regulations, we also understand that BPA in food containers, and other packaging and products, poses a concern for some consumers. In response to these concerns, Safeway’s food safety team has been closely monitoring third-party research on BPA and its effects. We have asked industry trade associations such as the Food Marketing Institute and the Grocery Manufacturers of America to do the same. The Company’s principal objective has been to find ways to limit the presence of BPA in several areas.
For example, our immediate priority was to remove BPA from products that commonly are used by small children, including baby bottles, sippy cups, pacifiers and utensils. Several years ago, we notified our suppliers that we would no longer accept products such as these. That transition happened in all stores, not just those where specific BPA-free packaging is mandated by law.
Safeway has begun working with private label product suppliers to identify acceptable alternatives to packaging containing BPA. It is our desire as a company to use BPA-free packaging for as many products as possible. We expect to make the transition on an ongoing basis as new options become commercially available. In the meantime, using alternatives that are currently available, we have made notable packaging and product changes. In addition to those changes noted to the above children’s products, we have eliminated the use of register paper containing BPA. We now utilize alternative packaging including aseptic pour cartons on some products, including O Organics soups.
Many canned goods have a thin lining containing a small amount of BPA to ensure the safety of the product until a customer is ready to use the product. While there is no conclusive scientific evidence that this minimal exposure to BPA in can linings poses any risks to consumers, Safeway has begun a process that we believe will result in the removal of BPA in the linings of canned goods in all of our corporate brand items. We recognize that this transition will take time as our suppliers and manufacturers are still researching and testing feasible alternatives.
The process of identifying BPA-free packaging alternatives is neither brief nor uncomplicated. We must do our due diligence to ensure that our decisions are based on sound scientific data and that all packaging alternatives are safe and viable. Food safety is a company priority of the highest level that is being managed by senior-level executives. BPA-free packaging alternatives are being researched by the most knowledgeable authorities within Safeway and the retail food industry.
For customers who have additional concerns and are looking for ways to reduce their exposure to BPA, we suggest they visit the FDA’s website on BPA. The site contains helpful links to scientific information and tips on reducing exposure.
We are guided by a commitment to protect the planet we live in, conserve its natural resources and preserve it for future generations. The health and vitality of our neighborhoods depends on our ability to achieve this.
There are many ethical standards that guide our environmental efforts and assure we do our part to protect against any harmful impacts. It is Safeway’s policy to:
- Conduct our business and operate our facilities in an environmentally responsible manner
- Comply with all applicable environmental laws and regulations
- Minimize waste and reduce pollution sources in our stores, corporate offices, and manufacturing and distribution facilities
- Minimize our environmental liabilities in the acquisition and disposition of properties
- Encourage and assist our customers, vendors and employees in utilizing sound environmental practices
We also believe every Safeway employee has a responsibility to minimize the environmental impact of his or her job whenever possible. This includes following all laws, regulations, rules and standards, and making appropriate reports to management and regulatory agencies. Environmental stewardship is an important part of the character of our company, and we encourage our employees to improve the company’s environmental performance.
Safeway Progress Statement on Group-Housed Pork Sourcing
In 2012, Safeway announced that it would begin formulating plans to convert its pork supply to group-sow housing. Safeway continues to increase the quantity of pork it buys from vendors transitioning to group-housing systems for their breeding sows.
Last year the company introduced its own line of Open Nature pork products that come exclusively from group-housed sow sources. Within the last several months the company has converted its entire Eastern Division fresh pork supply to product sourced from systems that utilize group-sow housing, with plans to add another operating division in early 2014. Safeway will continue to shift its pork business to suppliers that have publicly announced plans for moving away from gestation stalls to group-housing systems and will ask these suppliers to provide us with such plans by the end of 2014.
Safeway remains committed to this program and looks forward to working with our supplier community to achieve our objectives within a reasonable timeframe.
Statement on Genetically Modified Organisms
Statement on Genetically Modified Organisms
At Safeway, we believe that shoppers should always have a choice in selecting products that align with their lifestyle and budgets. As part of our ongoing efforts to meet that goal, we require that all Safeway brand suppliers meet USDA and FDA regulations. To date, the USDA, FDA and available science make no health or nutrition distinction between approved Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) and non-GMO products and ingredients.
Safeway stores carry more than 45,000 products. This includes approximately 8,000 Safeway brand products. For instance:
- Our O Organics™ line meets USDA organic standards, which do not allow the use of GMO ingredients. Safeway further requires that all of its O Organic™ suppliers obtain third-party organic certification;
- Safeway’s Open Nature® line of products, which contain no preservatives or artificial flavors and already include a number of non-GMO products;
- Our stores also carry a wide array of organic produce; and
- All of our Safeway Lucerne brand dairy milk products are rBST free.
For our shoppers whose lifestyle and or budgetary choices do not focus on non-GMO, we continue to provide an extensive selection of conventional Safeway private label and national brand products.
We Support Voluntary Labeling
While Safeway supports the voluntary labeling of products making non-GMO or GMO-free claims, we are also committed to continuing to provide our customers with choices across our many categories and brands.
Statement on Genetically Engineered Salmon
Statement on Genetically Engineered Salmon
Safeway relies on the FDA to set minimum regulatory requirements. Beyond FDA guidelines, we subject our fresh seafood vendors to additional standards and a selection process that includes confirming compliance with regulations and food safety standards, as well as a review of the environmental impact of the product sourcing.
While the FDA approved GE salmon for human consumption in November of 2015, we are not considering nor do we have any plans to carry GE salmon. The seafood products we offer will continue to be selected consistent with our Responsible Seafood Purchasing Policy, Responsible Sourcing Commitment and our partnership with FishWise.
Our Seafood Purchasing Policy will continue to follow the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch® criteria rating of Green “Best Choice” or Yellow “Good Alternative,” or certified to an equivalent environmental standard or engaged in a credible and time-bound improvement project as a product selection guide. Safeway’s Responsible Sourcing Commitment calls for all of our fresh and frozen seafood to be responsibly sourced and traceable or be in a time-bound improvement process. To find out more about our Responsible Choice Seafood objectives, see our website www.safeway.com/csr.
Seafood Watch® is a registered service mark of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Foundation.