Burberry was founded in 1856 by entrepreneur, Thomas Burberry. At the age of 21, he decided to create a fashion label that was innovative and functional for outdoor, and sometimes extreme purposes. The company famously supported various ventures to the Arctic Circle, Antarctica, flying expeditions and races, providing them with equipment, and iconic Burberry coats and jackets.
Every year, Burberry increase their efforts, donations and presence within the ethical trading, sustainable and environmentally friendly world. Over a two-year period, Burberry increased their community donations by £2.3m to £3.7m. They also increased the number of audits, supplier visits and training sessions by 5%, ensuring the welfare of workers, their working conditions and reduction of the impact of processes upon the environment.
Burberry displays a continued pursuit of improved corporate responsibility performance and tackles issues related to climate change; as well as efforts to inspire employees on issues of ethical trade, environmental sustainability and community investment.
Burberry is a member of the UN Global Compact and uses the Compact’s Ten Principles to guide its corporate responsibility activities. The company is also listed on the FTSE4Good Index, achieved the Carbon Trust Standard and is an active member of both the Ethical Trading Initiative and Business for Social Responsibility.
The majority of Burberry products are manufactured in Europe through third party suppliers. All Burberry suppliers are governed by the Group’s Ethical Trading Policy, which sets clear expectations regarding the management of labour standards. Four new policies were added to this, covering Bribery and Corruption, Foreign Contract Labour, Unauthorised Sub-Contracting and Animal Welfare.
To achieve long-term improvements in labour conditions, Burberry provides support and resources to suppliers to empower them to take responsibility for their factory and subcontractor conditions. The corporate responsibility team delivers supplier training covering the Group’s ethical trading expectations, management systems and counsel on transparency and standards for subcontractors.
The work of the Business for Social Responsibility Sustainable Luxury Working Group- of which Burberry was a founding member - continues, focusing on animal welfare guidelines and the exotic skins supply chain. As a result, the release of a common Animal Welfare Policy by the Group was communicated to Burberry suppliers, detailing its high expectations in respect of welfare standards.
Burberry is also a member of the Leather Working Group, supporting its efforts to improve transparency in the leather industry. Burberry does not utilise sandblasting on any of its products manufactured by or on behalf of the Group.
Is knowledgeable about their suppliers' environmental and social practices
Ensures that their suppliers pay their employees and subcontractors either local minimum wage and/or the living wage
This brand ensures their suppliers have policies preventing forced and/or child labour
Has programmes to support the restoration of mine sites after exploitation
Monitors the use of toxic chemicals in their supply chain