The Malta Independent 20 June 2019, Thursday


Thursday, 18 February 2016, 10:21 Last update: about 4 years ago

As The Body Shop turns forty, the company unveils a new global Corporate Social Responsibility strategy that will underpin all aspects of its company operation. This new Commitment 'Enrich not Exploit TM'  will reaffirm The Body Shop position as a leader in ethical business and will define the next stage of its development.

The Commitment, announced by Jeremy Schwartz, Chairman and CEO of The Body Shop, is an extensive programme of global activity and measurable targets that touches all areas of the business to be delivered by 2020.  Since its foundation by Anita Roddick in 1976, The Body Shop has always believed that business can be a force for good that can bring about change. The programme entitled Enrich Not Exploit TM, embraces the bold ethical principles from which The Body Shop was built.

 "The Body Shop courageously pioneered new ways of thinking, acting and speaking out as a company',  states Jeremy Schwartz.  Its ground-breaking campaigns were ahead of their time and changed laws on animal testing, domestic violence and human trafficking.  We were the first in beauty to use community trade and we still have the strongest programme in the industry. We are small, but we lead. Today for all of us, the greatest challenges lie ahead and The Body Shop's 40th anniversary is the perfect time to reassert our aim for leadership in ethical business. For us, being truly sustainable means shaping our business to work in line with the planet's natural systems so they can replenish and restore themselves. With our Commitment we're challenging ourselves to go further than we've ever gone before to make a real, sustainable and positive difference. We have set ourselves a significant goal to be the world's most ethical and truly sustainable global business." 

The Commitment will enable The Body Shop to protect and nurture the environment and society across every part of its business: ingredients, products, packaging, stores, employees, suppliers and campaigns. The programme is founded on three pillars: To enrich our planet, enrich our people, enrich our products.  The Body Shop has specific, measurable targets by 2020 that make the business accountable for delivery.

Enrich our People will see The Body Shop's Community Trade programme doubling to 40 ingredients and help enrich the communities that produce them.  This will assist 40,000 economically vulnerable people access work around the world, engage 8 million people in its mission and invest 250,000 voluntary hours of our skills and know-how to enrich the biodiversity of our local communities.

 Enrich our Products: This will ensure 100% of our natural ingredients are traceable and sustainably sourced to protect 10,000 hectares of forest and other habitat; reduce the environmental footprint of all our product categories each year; publish our use of natural origin ingredients, product biodegradability and water footprint; and develop an innovation pipeline that delivers pioneering cosmetic ingredients from biodiversity hotspots to help enrich these areas.

 Enrich our Planet: The Body Shop will build Bio-Bridges to protect and regenerate 75 million square metres of habitat, reduce the environmental footprint of its shops worldwide every time they are refurbished.  It plans to  develop three new sustainable packaging innovations and will strive to ensure that 70% of its product packaging does not contain fossil fuels.  It will reduce the energy use of its shops by 10% each year, and intends to power 100% of its shops with renewable or carbon balanced energy.

Jeremy Schwartz adds: "The Body Shop can be both a force for good and a successful, profitable business.  Forty years ago Anita Roddick set out a challenge for The Body Shop to tackle the big issues of her time.  We're now tackling the big issues of today.  We want our Enrich Not ExploitTM Commitment to inspire a new generation of customers, supporters and especially millennials who truly care about how a company operates.'

Simone Mizzi, Franchise owner of the Body Shop in Malta, established in 1987 says'' My husband Kenneth and I began The Body Shop in Malta because we liked the way it challenged thinking so business could be used to bring about change,  improve society and preserve our natural heritage.  The Body Shop was the first to challenge the use of animals for the testing of cosmetics, to pioneer recycling in times when recycling had never been heard of. When we spoke about acid rain, pollution, climate change, or discussed alternative energy or our carbon footprint, people thought we were talking science fiction.  And yes, we dared talk about violence in the home, and the trafficking of children and women in Malta at a time when mentioning a sex offenders' register was taboo. Most of these issues today are a given fact and most governments in Europe have established programmes to deal with them.  However, protection of our planet's biodiversity needs to be higher in the public mind so more is not lost.   Our plants and animal species and the natural spaces in which they survive along with a great number of the world's growing population are more than ever under threat.  In Malta pressure on land and speculation of our countryside threaten our very quality of life.   The coast, green spaces and open land are being abused and any regulatory measures to protect them are fast being relaxed.  Our children find the countryside only on Facebook.  After almost 30 years with the Body Shop in Malta, we are as proud as ever to be part of this company's renewed environmental and social commitment in its drive to protect the planet and its living creatures. 
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