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With Weleda on board, UEBT targets further biodiversity conservation growth

By Andrew McDougall , 19-Oct-2011
Last updated the 19-Oct-2011 at 12:41 GMT

Natural and organics manufacturer Weleda has joined the Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT) in supporting biodiversity conservation, with the non-profit organisation targeting further membership growth to ensure ethical sourcing of biodiversity is put into practice.

Speaking to CosmeticsDesign-Europe.com, executive director Rik Kutsch Lojenga expressed his satisfaction that Weleda had come on board and were a good example of the pioneering work that UEBT members can do on issues such as biodiversity conservation and benefit sharing throughout the supply chain.

“One of UEBT’s priorities over the next few years is membership growth in addition to supporting members to put into practice ethical sourcing of biodiversity. Emerging markets like Brazil are likely to be an important driver of UEBT’s growth in the coming years,” he said.

Commitment to biodiversity

In becoming a member of UEBT, Weleda commits to the principles of Ethical BioTrade and will apply the Ethical BioTrade Standard to its sourcing practices, ensuring it promotes biodiversity conservation and the sustainable use of biodiversity, as well as making sure that benefits are shared equally along the supply chain.

“It is very important for a company such as this, which is so well known in the sector both with consumers and its peers, to commit to support the ethical trade in biodiversity-based products. The pioneering work of companies like Weleda in this area will hopefully motivate others to follow down the same path,” continued Lojenga.

Weleda joins companies such as Natura, Beraca, and Blue Sky Botanics in the UEBT community, and was keen to highlight the importance of promoting consumer awareness on biodiversity and fair trade, which it claims is made more credible with UEBT membership.

Increased attention

"UEBT has a very high expertise in the field of biodiversity and fair trade and its standard provides a model fully in line with our values. UEBT enables Weleda to implement a defined standard within the organization and towards our stakeholders such as suppliers and processors," said Bas Schneiders, head of Corporate Sustainability and International Strategic Sourcing for Weleda.

Because of the International Year of Biodiversity in 2010, biodiversity received a lot of attention, yet Lojenga feels a lot needs to be done to incorporate biodiversity in industry practices and that attention for this issue should not cease.

“The United Nations Decade on Biodiversity, 2011 - 2020, aims to keep attention focused on biodiversity aiming to increase awareness and above all prompt action in many sectors, especially business. UEBT is working with the CBD to help make this happen,” he added.

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