Ethical Sourcing

Ethical Sourcing

David Jones is committed to becoming a leader in ethical sourcing by driving continuous improvement in environmental, social and ethical standards along our supply chain.

Our Commitment

Given our standing as an iconic Australian retailer, our stakeholders expect David Jones to play a positive role in improving social, ethical and environmental standards along our supply chain. With this in mind, we are committed to building a world-class ethical sourcing program that creates positive impact along our supply chain and establishes David Jones as the ethical choice for consumers.

This commitment is outlined in our 2015-20 Ethical Sourcing Strategy, an ambitious plan to collaborate with our people, our suppliers and the wider industry to improve working conditions for people employed along our supply chain, strengthen relationships with our suppliers, protect the environment and promote animal welfare.

Our approach is to work collaboratively with a range of stakeholders in a way that promotes and supports continuous improvement. We will be open and honest about the complexity of the challenges that lay ahead but we will also be very clear in relation to what we expect of our supply chain partners.

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Our Stakeholders

There are a broad range of stakeholders interested in our ethical sourcing activities including our customers, our employees (in particular our buying teams), our not-for-profit partners and our suppliers.

In developing our Ethical Sourcing Strategy, we conducted extensive consultation with all of these groups and we continue to engage each of these stakeholder groups to ensure that our activities align with their changing expectations. We also provide regular updates on our activities, achievements and challenges.

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Our Policies

We have developed a number of polices to help communicate our requirements and determine compliance along our supply chain.

Our Supplier Code of Conduct outlines our minimum requirements of doing business with David Jones in relation to environmental, social and ethical issues along our supply chain. There are four elements of our Supplier Code of Conduct, which requires our suppliers to:

  1. Ensure safe and fair working conditions, in line with the ETI Base Code
  2. Ensure integrity and transparency between David Jones and supply chain partners
  3. Improve environmental outcomes beyond David Jones’ operational control
  4. Protect the welfare of animals

We recognise that there may be times where our expectations are not being met and, while we are committed to working with our suppliers to support continuous improvement, we do reserve the right to terminate business relationships with suppliers that fall well short of our expectations or fail to improve over a period of time.

David Jones recognises the importance of protecting the welfare of animals.

David Jones recognises the importance of protecting the welfare of animals. Our Supplier Code of Conduct outlines our expectations in relation to animal welfare and requires all suppliers to "employ all reasonable efforts to ensure that animals under their care are treated in a humane manner" in compliance with local and national laws.

This provision applies to all suppliers including our branded suppliers, who are required to have systems in place to ensure they meet our expectations in relation to animal welfare and that they maintain adequate records to demonstrate compliance.

To support our Code of Conduct, we have also developed our Animal Welfare Policy, which applies more prescriptive requirements on our private label suppliers. These requirements include ensuring: that animals are treated humanely and with respect; that harmful processes are not employed; and that prohibited products are not supplied to David Jones. Some of these prohibited products include fur, angora, foie gras, exotic skins and products made from endangered species.

In relation to fur, our Code of Conduct specifically states that "David Jones does not condone the use of fur and suppliers must ensure that fur is not used in any product supplied to David Jones." This provision applies to all private label and branded suppliers. Click here to read David Jones’ Position Statement on Fur and Faux Fur.

David Jones is committed to eliminating harmful substances from its supply chain.

Our Harmful Substances Policy outlines our expectations in relation to the use of harmful substances and those substances that we would like our suppliers to stop using as a matter of priority.

David Jones is committed to working with suppliers to reduce the environmental and social impact of packaging.

As a signatory to the Australian Packaging Covenant, David Jones has developed our Guiding Principles for Sustainable Packaging to improve packaging design of our private label range.

In addition, we encourage all suppliers to take all reasonable steps to produce packaging from renewable, recycled and recyclable materials as a as a minimum requirement of having signed the Supplier Code of Conduct and our Vendor Trading Terms.

Our Position Statements

We have developed a number of position statements to help communicate our expectations along our supply chain.

Our Progress

Our Ethical Sourcing Strategy outlines what we are doing between now and 2020 to ensure we meet the expectations of our key stakeholders and support continuous improvement in relation to the social and environmental conditions in our supply chain. Read about our approach to ethical sourcing and how we are progressing against each of six strategic objectives.

Our commitment is to share more information with our customers, to help them make more informed purchasing decisions.

We have now launched our sustainability attributes program, which will give our suppliers an opportunity to talk to our customers about the sustainability credentials of their products and brands.

"A product with a sustainability attribute has a lower environmental or social impact than an equivalent product"

In launching this program, we have defined 48 different attributes, provided training to our buyers and suppliers, and developed a series of icons to make it easy for customers to understand more about the sustainability credentials of their purchases. You can find out more about our sustainability attributes and icons by clicking here.

To date, we have confirmed that more than 15% of our private label range contains one or more sustainability attribute, including: the David Jones Beauty range which achieved PETA Cruelty Free accreditation in 2017; the David Jones Baby range which is now made of organic cotton (the majority of which is GOTS certified) and the David Jones Classic Collection which now includes some Better Cotton Initiative cotton and recycled materials.

In addition, we have confirmed that more than 180 of David Jones’ branded vendors hold a sustainability attribute across part or all of their range.

Our commitment is to put in place strong due diligence systems to assess supply chain compliance, improve traceability across our private label range and build capacity across our supply chain.

Private Label Vendors (Non-food)

Our non-food private label vendors account for about 5% of our total sales across the following categories: apparel, shoes and accessories, beauty and home. Under our ethical sourcing program, these suppliers must provide details of their manufacturing locations, register themselves and their factories on the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (SEDEX) and provide a recent social audit for each factory.

To date, all of our private label vendors have registered with SEDEX and we now know the location of all factories that produce David Jones’ private label products. These 110-130 factories (depending on the time of year) are located in Italy, India, China, Thailand, Turkey, Egypt, Slovakia, Australia, Poland, Czech Republic, Taiwan, New Zealand, Philippines, Indonesia and Pakistan.

In addition, 98% of our non-food factories have registered on SEDEX and provided a valid social audit. As a result of reviewing these audits, we have identified 612 non-compliances against our Code of Conduct, which represents an average of five issues per factory. Of these non-compliances, 5% were rated as critical issues related to excessive working hours and overtime. The remainder of the issues were rated as either major or minor and were predominantly related to health and safety concerns in factories. To date, more than 300 issues have been resolved and we are working with our vendors to close out the remaining issues.

Data from these audits has been used to support the introduction of our new Approved Factory Program, which will (for the first time) restrict orders being placed on factories that have open critical issues. While our approach is to continue working with these vendors and factories to resolve issues, we do reserve our rights to seek an alternative factory or reconsider our continued trading relationship if we do not see reasonable progress over time.

Private Label Vendors (Food)

Our efforts over the past 12 months have been focused on establishing the relationships and systems needed to expand our due diligence program to also include food vendors. As with our non-food private label vendors, our private label food vendors will be required to provide details of their manufacturing locations and register on SEDEX.

In parallel to this work, we have also been working with key supply chain partners to improve traceability of produce back to the farm. This information will be used to determine priorities for further due diligence across our produce supply chain, for example to help determine where site audits might be required and/or where we may need to conduct additional investigations in relation to the use of temporary labour agencies.

Branded Vendors (Non-food and Food)

With regards to the balance and majority of our supply chain, David Jones expects that branded suppliers have their own policies and systems in place to ensure that their supply chain is in compliance with our Code of Conduct.

Over the past 24 months, we have been engaging our 1100+ branded vendors through our own Self-Assessment Questionnaire to understand what systems and policies they have in place, where they are producing and where they are sourcing key inputs from. With a 90% response rate, the thousand completed surveys we have received provides a rich source of data and unique insight into how we can work with our vendors to continually improve performance of our branded supply chain.

Our commitment is to support wellbeing of people working along our supply chain, by implementing community development programs and promoting awareness about key issues like modern slavery and living wage

While most of the activities under this commitment are scheduled to begin from 2018 onwards, we have made a submission to the Senate Inquiry in relation to the introduction of a Modern Slavery Act in Australia and started to engage with our NGO partners in a dialogue around living wages.

Our commitment is to play a role in supporting industry efforts to improve social, ethical and environmental standards along the supply chain.

In line with our commitment, we continue to engage actively with the NGO community, other retailers and industry associations to progress the ethical sourcing agenda.

Some of the activities we have conducted over the past 12 months include:

  • Convene roundtable discussions with our NGO partners and critical friends, which we believe is the only forum of its type in Australasia.
  • Conduct one-on-one meetings with key NGO partners and critical friends.
  • Make a submission to the Senate Inquiry into the establishment of a Modern Slavery Act in Australia.
  • Participate in roundtable discussions conducted by the Australian government, Australian Human Rights Commission and Australian Retailers Association.
  • Participate in the United Nations Global Compact Network of Australia, with our Ethical Sourcing Manager a member of its Human Rights Leadership Group.
  • Support the establishment of the Ethical Brand Alliance, a group of Australian retailers working together to tackle complex issues in the ethical sourcing space.

Through our due diligence program, we also continue to progress our work on the traceability of cotton and meet our commitments as a signatory to the Cotton Pledge: to not knowingly source cotton from Uzbekistan, where state-sponsored child and forced labour is systematically used in the cotton industry.

Our commitment is to engage our buying teams and other employees so that they can help us to achieve our ethical sourcing goals.

Over the life of our program, we have engaged extensively with our buying teams across all categories: apparel, shoes and accessories, beauty, home and food. To date, 91% of the merchandise team having completed Ethical Sourcing Awareness Training on the risks and issues encountered in modern supply chains. We continue to provide this training for new starters on a bi-monthly basis.

In addition, an extensive resource library has been developed for buying teams, to recap on training sessions and support them when engaging vendors on the issues and opportunities associated with ethical sourcing. More broadly, ethical sourcing content has also been incorporated into induction programs for new employees in stores and support centre.

We have also established two employee networks, bringing together 30 like-minded champions from across Apparel, Beauty and Food. These teams meet monthly to support the development and implementation of sustainability initiatives within their part of the business.

These measures aim to increase awareness and integration of our ethical sourcing objectives. To increase accountability, everyone in our buying functions now has part of their annual performance review determined by their support of the Good Business Journey and the level to which they have considered sustainability in decision-making.

Our commitment is to develop policies and systems to support an efficient and effective ethical sourcing program, by establishing a best practice framework and Code of Conduct to manage ethical sourcing at David Jones.

Over the past 12 months, we have invested heavily in strengthening our data management systems ahead of the launch of a Supplier Portal that will make it easier for vendors to share information with us and provide updates on a regular basis.

We have also invested in increasing the number of vendors that have formally acknowledged our Code of Conduct. All David Jones vendors are bound by David Jones’ Supplier Code of Conduct with 99% of suppliers countersigning our Code or advising that they have their own equivalent in place.

We have reviewed our Supplier Code of Conduct each year since its development in 2013 and have also developed a suite of policies to complement the Code, such as our Animal Welfare Policy, our Harmful Substances Policy and our Guiding Principles for Sustainable Packaging.