Sustainability isn't just a part of Visy. It's fundamental to everything we do - from the products we make, to the way we make them. We believe sustainability is central to our future as a business, so it plays a part in every decision we make.
We all know that sustainability has a lot to do with the environment. But at Visy, we see it as more than that. For us, it's also about how we affect the world around us, and all the people who live in it. As a sustainable business, we believe we're better able to help everyone - whether it's by making our employees safer, our local community healthier, or our customers more profitable.
We also believe sustainability works for our business on a practical level. It increases market opportunities, cuts unnecessary cost, increases profit and encourages a culture of innovation among our employees.
And of course, our sustainable approach means we're doing everything we can to limit our impact on the environment. It's our aim to take responsibility for the entire lifespan of our products - from when they're first conceived, to when they're finally recycled and made into something else.
ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY
At Visy, we're focused on achieving three core sustainability objectives:
OBJECTIVE 1: ECONOMIC SUSTAINABILITY
Relationships count for a lot at Visy. We know that building them and maintaining them takes time and energy, so we've taken care to nurture our partnerships with customers and suppliers. We know that long-term, sustainable relationships are fundamental to our success as a business. So, we focus on working together with our customers to identify their needs and develop innovative solutions to make them more profitable. We believe that when our customers succeed, so do we.
We also show our commitment to economic sustainability through our investments in technology, equipment and employees. Our success is supported by continuous research, innovation and investment into best practice operations.
OBJECTIVE 2: ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
Like many companies, our goal is to effectively manage our environmental impacts. What makes us different, though, is how far we push this. We're not content to just comply to regulations - we seek to maximise energy efficiency, maximise recycling, minimise water use, and minimise waste to landfill.
In our eyes, waste is as an opportunity. And we see it as our job to make the most of it; whether it's by converting recycled materials into innovative packaging, or by extracting energy from what would otherwise become landfill.
OBJECTIVE 3: SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY
As a major Australian recycling and manufacturing company, we recognise that we have a major impact on the world - one that reaches well beyond our 5,500 employees across Australasia. It's our goal to ensure this impact is a positive one.
We're focused on helping create a more sustainable and inclusive society. Whether it's by contributing to the community, choosing environmentally friendly suppliers or providing a safe workplace for employees, we always aim to behave responsibly.
It's up to us to help build the world we want to live in. And we're determined to do our bit.
ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE AND REPORTING
At Visy we measure our environmental performance to ensure we minimise any negative impacts on the environment, while maximising the positive.
With our Environment Policy , we clearly set out our commitment to reduce waste, minimise lifecycle impacts and efficiently utilise natural resources. This policy is aligned to the significant environmental impacts of the activities, products and services that we provide.
What does this mean? In simple terms, that we take responsibility for all the stages of our products' lifespans. It's only by really understanding how our products will be made, used and disposed of that we can minimise their environmental and social impact. So we look at the bigger picture to work out where we can improve.
Product stewardship at Visy involves everything from stipulating conditions to suppliers, to documenting and controlling our internal processes. Basically, we influence everything we can to improve disposal, reuse and recycling systems.
AUSTRALIAN PACKAGING COVENANT
Visy has been a signatory to the Australian Packaging Covenant (APC) since its inception in 1999. For Visy, the Covenant is more than just a reporting mechanism. The APC allows us to work with all packaging stakeholders - customers, consumers, suppliers and employees - to develop packaging solutions with minimal environmental and social impacts throughout the product's entire lifecycle.
Visy has taken active steps to ensure we're well positioned to implement the activities required under the new APC. We've developed Visy's approach to the Covenant - "The Year One APC Action Plan" - as an extension of the Sustainable Packaging Guidelines found with the APC. This is the guide we use to ensure that employees engaged in the packaging development process always consider potential impacts on the environment.
In line with the requirements of the APC, Visy is:
- Assessing ranges of existing packaging
- Assessing new packaging at the point of design
- Sourcing raw materials from responsible suppliers
- Documenting and reporting its performance
Our 2014 APC Annual Report released in March 2015, demonstrates our performance against the first year of our Action Plan.