As a direct seller whose 'store' is the brochure and printed materials, with virtually no brick and mortar stores, Avon is a significant user of paper. The issue of deforestation is especially important to Avon given our reliance on paper. We are committed to helping end deforestation through our internal efforts and policies, including the Avon Paper Promise and Avon Palm Oil Promise and our reforestation fundraising initiative, Healthy Forests, Beautiful World.
As a significant consumer of paper products, Avon can influence both supply and demand in the market. In March 2010, we announced the Avon Paper Promise, a comprehensive policy for promoting responsible forest use and protecting forests.
We are committed to optimizing our overall use of paper in every area of our business, including distribution methodologies, basis weight reductions, reductions in brochure size, and increasing the use of electronic media as a replacement for paper-based products. We also continue to leverage technology and establish paperless processes wherever possible.
Our goal is to purchase 100 percent of our paper from certified and/or post-consumer recycled content sources by 2020 with a certification preference of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). As of 2015, nearly 94 percent of Avon's brochure paper met the Avon Paper Promise commitments, and approximately 37 percent of paper used in Avon's product brochures is sourced from FSC certified forests.
Read the Avon Paper Promise.
Avon recognizes that palm oil is a significant cause of tropical deforestation and peatland depletion, which can result in the loss of natural habitats for endangered species. Palm oil also has known human rights issues.
Although more than 80 percent of palm oil is used for food products, it also is one of many natural oils used in personal care products. Avon is not a significant user of palm oil or palm kernel oil (PKO) and predominantly uses ingredients that are derivatives of these ingredients.
As a company, we are committed to protecting the environment and respecting and upholding the human rights of the communities and workers affected by our operations and supply chain. The Avon Palm Oil Promise, released in 2011 and updated in 2015, outlines our commitment to responsible sourcing in our palm oil supply chain and includes Avon’s No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation (NDPE) commitment. The guidelines in our Promise are designed to hold our suppliers accountable to our specific sourcing principles.
Avon is a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). Since 2011 we have supported the production of sustainable palm oil through the Book & Claim program, which means that for every estimated ton of palm oil derivative we use in the production of our products, we have paid a voluntary premium to a palm oil producer that is operating within the RSPO strict guidelines for social and environmental responsibility. We supported the production of 20,000 metric tons of sustainable palm oil in 2016 through the purchase of Book & Claim certificates.
Avon will continue to purchase credit certificates for every estimated ton of palm oil derivative we use in the production of our products, gradually phasing out the need for credits each year as we increase our efforts to transform practices that destroy forests, exclude communities and exploit workers. We also commit to annually reporting on our progress through the submission of an RSPO Annual Communication of Progress (ACOP) report and annual palm oil progress reports.
We are dedicated to working in collaboration with our peers, NGOs, suppliers and other stakeholders to promote practices and standards with the goal of traceability and the elimination of deforestation suppliers to ensure palm oil, palm kernel oil, and derivatives used in Avon products globally meet our Palm Oil Promise.
Avon's Commitment to Responsible Palm Oil
In March 2017, we published an action plan that followed four general steps:
Our progress on these actions is available in our 2018 Palm Oil Progress Report.
The traceability of palm/PKO derivatives is complex, which is why Avon became a member of the non-profit organization The Forest Trust (TFT) to support this work. Avon and TFT are collaborating to map Avon’s palm derivatives supply chain to various key milestones to ensure Avon’s values of sourcing palm oil free from deforestation and exploitation are shared upstream at the level of production.
Our initial focus was on mapping Avon’s top ten suppliers’ supply chains to the level of first importer—companies that are generally the link between countries of palm oil production (e.g. Indonesia or Malaysia) and countries of manufacturing. We have also traced the supply to a point in the supply chain where suppliers can demonstrate that the palm oil meets our sourcing principles.
As part of Avon’s commitment to traceability and transparency, we are publishing a list of the mills from our top 10 suppliers that includes the mill name, the mill’s parent company and the mill coordinates. We will update this list as we progress on our traceability work with the remainder of our supply chain.
Now that Avon has reached traceability to the mill with the majority of our top 10 suppliers, we have identified key points of leverage and risk within our supply chain where our support can affect change on the ground. Through our partnership with TFT, we are funding two transformation projects in Indonesia and Malaysia. Our traceability work and our mill list have enabled us to identify that these projects cover approximately 97% of Avon’s known palm oil supply chain.
APT (Areal Prioritas Transformasi) Landscapes (Aceh Tamiang and Southern Aceh, Indonesia)
Avon is currently funding the TFT Landscapes Programme that works to create resilient, thriving communities and ecosystems. This landscape level, multi-stakeholder approach will ensure robust, environmentally and socially sensitive land-use plans are in place for key geographies in Indonesia that are relevant to our palm oil supply chain, as well as to those of other supporting TFT members.
Directory of Services for Vulnerable Children (Sabah, Malaysia)
One of the challenges facing palm oil companies in Sabah is the lack of understanding of policy requirements and good practices to prevent children working in plantations and being exposed to hazardous environments. As part of an effort to encourage businesses to collaborate with local NGOs to strengthen child protection, Avon is funding the mapping of services for vulnerable children in Sabah. The resulting directory will be disseminated to local mills and plantations, workers who are parents and the local community.
Key Palm Oil Documents