ST. PAUL, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today 3M announced a new pulp and paper sourcing policy designed to
ensure all the virgin wood fiber going into 3M’s paper-based products
and packaging comes from sources that protect forests and respect human
Recognizing the risks facing forests and continuing its deep commitment
to conserve natural resources, 3M’s new industry-leading policy does not
allow any wood fiber to be linked to deforestation or illegal
operations. The policy also requires protection of high carbon stock
forests and high conservation values, like intact forest landscapes,
peatlands and the habitat of endangered species.
3M joined forces with The Forest Trust (TFT) and Dovetail Partners to
learn more about the threats facing forests in its supply chain, and
update this policy.
“The first strategic decision we made in drafting this policy was to
focus on defining clearly for our suppliers our own values and
requirements related to the protection of forests and vulnerable
people,” said Jean Sweeney, vice president, 3M Environmental, Health,
Safety and Sustainability Operations. “We are taking responsibility for
making sure our pulp and paper suppliers meet the requirements of the
policy, and help them to raise their performance if necessary.”
In addition to the environmental elements of today’s policy, it also
sets strong standards related to social concerns, including respect for
workers’ rights and indigenous peoples’ rights to free, prior and
informed consent to operations on their traditional lands. Under the new
policy, all paper-based products and packaging suppliers are required to
provide information on the original forest sources of the virgin pulp in
3M’s products, and allow those sources to be assessed against 3M’s
3M’s newly revised policy comes on the heels of a multi-year campaign by
ForestEthics challenging the company to strengthen its commitment to
protect forests and endangered wildlife, and to support rights of
forest-impacted communities. Greenpeace joined the campaign in 2014.
“3M had the vision and the commitment back in the 1970’s to endeavor to
address its climate impact, and they did so with great effect. We knew
they had the capacity and the smarts to take the same approach with
forests,” said Todd Paglia, executive director, ForestEthics. “The
policy announced today is industry-leading, and represents exactly the
type of innovation that 3M is known for.”
Implementation of the policy throughout 3M’s global operations is a
substantial undertaking, involving more than 70 countries and 5,000 pulp
and paper suppliers, each with their own manufacturing facilities and
To drive change across the industry, 3M will engage with its direct and
indirect suppliers, to educate them on the forestry issues addressed in
the policy, and support them to set up their own responsible fiber
sourcing programs. The hope is that this will have a ripple effect in
driving positive change beyond 3M’s fiber supply, leading to widespread
market demand for protection of forests and respect for workers’ and
indigenous peoples’ rights.
3M not only collaborated with, but became a member of TFT, a non-profit
organization with a strong track record in guiding companies on the
development and implementation of responsible pulp and paper sourcing
and improved forest management across global supply chains. 3M and TFT
will work closely together to map 3M’s supply chains back to source and
assess them against the 3M policy.
“We are excited to be working with 3M on this important effort to
transform the global pulp and paper market to be drivers of forest
protection, and to clearly send a message that deforestation is
unacceptable,” said Scott Poynton, founder and executive director, The
The process of mapping the supply chains back to the harvest source and
assessing suppliers according to the updated policy is underway. This
work builds on 3M’s long-standing legal harvest program and is designed
to ensure compliance against international forest product legality
regulations such as the U.S. Lacey Act, the European Union Timber
Regulation, and the Australian Illegal Logging Prohibition Act. 3M’s
Legal Harvest program already requires suppliers to report on the genus,
species, and country of harvest for all plant-based fiber in 3M products.
As part of its commitment, 3M will publish semiannual updates of its
progress on implementing its policy. These updates will be available on
the 3M and TFT websites.
3M has already taken action to sever business with suppliers out of
compliance with its new standards.
3M is a science-based company with a culture of
creative collaboration that inspires powerful technologies, making life
better. With $32 billion in sales, 3M employs 90,000 people worldwide
and has operations in more than 70 countries. For more information,
or follow @3MNewsroom on Twitter.