Wolseley steps up ethical timber efforts

2 November 2011

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2 November 2011 | Adam Leach

Construction materials company Wolseley is strengthening controls around its timber sourcing to make it more robust ahead of legislative changes.

The company's CorporateResponsibility report, published yesterday, said that while it is already fully compliant with current regulations over timber sourcing, its procurement team is developing tougher controls to ensure it will meet future EU regulations. Under the rules, which come into force in 2013, companies putting timber products onto the European market must be able to identify all the suppliers involved in the product supply chain.

The company said it believed changes it was putting in place would provide other benefits to the organisation, including more efficient and robust purchasing processes and giving customers greater confidence that they can rely on them for high-quality products and materials.

To develop stronger controls the Wolseley launched a pilot programme with a selection of suppliers. The procurement team developed an assessment process to provide details on how to comply with its policy and providing documentary evidence.

The company is now looking to roll out the programme across its supply chain and intends to be able to assess risks associated with the supplier, country of origin and the supplier’s own supply chain. The project has resulted in a closer working relationship between the sourcing, quality assurance and quality control teams.

The Corporate Responsibility report, which was released as part of the company’s annual report, also revealed that it had developed an anti-fraud and anti-corruption manual that was distributed to all employees. Individuals whose particular job role makes them ‘high risk’ will be given more comprehensive training.

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