Our ability to meet the needs of the people we serve depends on a steady supply of high-quality, safe and reliable materials. If not managed in a sustainable manner, some of these products—including those originating from forests and those derived from palm oil—may cause adverse social and environmental impacts.
Johnson & Johnson’s most significant use of forestry products is in our paper-based packaging materials. We have established sourcing principles for the purchasing of forest-based products—such as packaging, office paper, printed marketing materials and wood-based furniture—as articulated in our Forest Products Sourcing Principles. Additionally, we developed Responsible Palm Oil Sourcing Criteria, which set forth our expectations for suppliers of palm oil derivatives or palm kernel oil derivatives. We have processes in place to implement our responsible sourcing requirements, and to measure conformance. Please see the above-mentioned statements for more details.
For forest-based products, we did not meet our commitment outlined in the Forest Products Sourcing Principles to have at least 80% of the spend with suppliers located in or sourcing from a high-priority country verified by 2017. The data we collected allowed us to identify risks, but because of the complexity of the supplier network, the data quality did not provide sufficient visibility into the country of origin as well as the content and characteristics of the materials that we buy. Building on these learnings, in 2017 we entered into a partnership with Rainforest Alliance (RA), a global non-governmental organization with over 30 years of experience in sustainable forest and land management and local presence in many regions around the world. We are working closely with RA to revisit our sourcing strategy and develop an action plan for improving transparency across all regions. In 2017, in partnership with RA, we conducted supplier workshops in Mumbai and Bangkok to level-set with on-the-ground suppliers on our expectations for engagement, and to educate them about our policies and standards, and developing due diligence systems. Our continued partnership with RA will help facilitate engagements with Asia Pacific suppliers to improve transparency and implement verification where required.
Conflict Minerals Rule 13p-1 under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 requires public reporting companies that manufacture or contract to manufacture products containing “conflict minerals” (defined as tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold [3TG]) to conduct due diligence on the source and chain of custody of those conflict minerals to help determine whether they originated from the Democratic Republic of Congo or adjoining countries, and directly or indirectly financed or benefited armed groups in those countries. In 2017, we revised our Statement on Conflict Minerals to reinforce our continued commitment to taking steps to determine the use, country of origin and source of 3TG in our global product portfolio. Based on our due diligence efforts for the 2017 reporting period, we do not have conclusive information regarding the country of origin or facilities used to process the necessary conflict minerals in the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies’ products. For more information, see our Conflict Minerals Report for the calendar year ended December 31, 2017.
Johnson & Johnson is a member of the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI), formerly the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative. RMI is a cross-industry organization that provides resources, tools and information to help companies source conflict-free minerals.