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Social Responsibility

We rely on the people involved in our production chains and we support and promote their interests.

The comprehensive nature of our product range means that our supply chains are highly complex, spanning multiple countries and production stages. Taking all product lines into account, we currently work with approximately 350 suppliers (first-tier) that are based primarily in Southeast Asia. The prerequisites and criteria for these partnerships vary, depending on the business area.

While we often maintain long-term partnerships with our textile suppliers, the supply chains in the non-food sector tend to be much more variable on account of product and production specifications. In the food sector, on the other hand, factors such as regionality and seasonality or weather-related fluctuations in harvests play an important role.

We take all these factors into account in our risk analysis, which is used to develop approaches to minimising risk within our sphere of influence. As part of our due diligence approach, we record, analyse and assess the potential risks in our supply chains at regular intervals.

These risks depend on the sourcing countries, the products, our business model and international standards. The latter include, for example, the international human rights conventions, the ILO fundamental labour conventions, the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.

In the context of this risk analysis, we focus on potentially vulnerable groups, such as women, ethnic minorities, migrants, indigenous minorities, children and homeworkers. Our ultimate goal is to ensure that no harm comes to these groups. That is why we maintain regular contact with vulnerable groups through our social monitoring system. We do this by means of factory visits, corrective measures, training and our grievance mechanism.

amfori BSCI and the Wünsche social monitoring system

The Wünsche Group is a member of amfori BSCI, an industry initiative aimed at improving social standards in global supply chains. We are committed to comply with the amfori BSCI Code of Conduct and have ensured that our suppliers follow suit. We thus play an active role in ensuring that socially acceptable and fair working conditions are implemented and maintained in our suppliers’ factories. Compliance is monitored by means of regular third-party audits, which involve an inspection conducted by an independent auditing body. The majority of these are amfori BSCI audits, but some are SMETA (Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit), for example. These audits verify compliance with the social standards enshrined in our Code of Conduct. We support our suppliers in drawing up and implementing action plans to ensure that social standards are upheld. In addition, we carry out our own inspections, “Wünsche social audits”, at our supplier sites, since we like to see the factories and the conditions on site for ourselves.

At our largest production sites in China, Bangladesh and Pakistan, our colleagues work directly with the factories and can, if necessary, provide assistance with correcting instances of non-compliance.

Thanks to our membership of amfori BSCI, we have the ear of regulators and can therefore engage indirectly in lobbying activities. It is only by joining forces with stakeholders in the private sector, the political arena and NGOs, that sustainable change can be achieved and social standards implemented. We are also involved in working groups and regularly participate in network meetings as a means of remaining actively in touch with other stakeholders.

Grievance mechanism

A core feature of our Corporate Responsibility Management concept is that stakeholders have the opportunity to report violations against our Code of Conduct or our corporate responsibility principles. This grievance mechanism is of particular importance to relevant target groups, such as factory workers, trade union members, local residents, women and homeworkers.

As a member of amfori BSCI, we are working on establishing a collective grievance mechanism. This is to become available to all BSCI members in the future. Within the context of the Bangladesh ACCORD, we have already had positive experiences with a collective grievance mechanism. All of the grievances we received through this procedure were recorded appropriately, analysed and processed.

We aspire to have a similarly successful mechanism in all of our sourcing countries. Since the development of a grievance mechanism by amfori BSCI is a process that we can only accelerate to a limited extent, we have created interim solutions. For example, we allow all stakeholders the opportunity to submit grievances on our website by sending an email to grievance[at]wuenschegroup.de. These, in turn, are dealt with immediately. Our social compliance auditors have business cards with their contact details that they can distribute them proactively among workers during factory visits. We regard these measures as an important first step towards having a functioning grievance mechanism.

Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety / RMG Sustainability Council (RSC)

The Rana Plaza factory building collapsed in Bangladesh in 2013. The Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh initiative came into being in the immediate aftermath of this terrible disaster. The aim of this unique agreement between brands, trade unions and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) is to improve safety in factory buildings in Bangladesh and thus, prevent tragedies similar to the 2013 disaster. We, the Wünsche Group, source a significant portion of our textiles from Bangladeshi factories and have therefore pledged to play an active role in developing this process through our membership of Accord. Our partner factories receive regular visits from Accord inspectors.

During these inspections, the fire and building safety measures that have been implemented by the factories are assessed. The RMG Sustainability Council (RSC) has since taken over these local activities from Accord; thus, the work of the Accord is now being continued on a national level with the additional participation of Bengali industry representatives. Since the start of this initiative, more than 2,000 safety hazards have been identified and remediated in our factories – an achievement we are very proud of.


As of February 2021

Stronger together.