The A.I.S.E. Charter for Sustainable Cleaning

Best Practice

A.I.S.E. workshop on Social Responsibility guidance for companies, operating in the detergents, cleaners and maintenance products industry - 11 June 2015

Following up on a workshop which had been organised with companies and national associations to discuss opportunities, challenges, solutions for building-up the A.I.S.E. social responsibility pillar (see below), A.I.S.E. held a workshop on Social Responsibility (SR) guidance for companies, operating in the detergents, cleaners and maintenance  products industry in Europe on 11 June 2015 in Brussels. 25 delegates from companies, A.I.S.E. national associations and CSR Europe, a Brussels-based think tank were informed about the SR Guidance.  It is planned that these guidelines will complement new Charter CSPs on Social Responsibility.

After an introduction on A.I.S.E.'s sustainability strategy and the planned Charter update with SR elements, CSR Europe provided insights into the relevant HR topics, i.e. Human Rights, Labour Practices, Fair Operating Practices and Community Involvement. Then, representatives from the companies Spectro, Vandeputte and Promer contributed to the programme with best practice case studies; these presentations and specific break-out sessions stimulated a very interactive discussion, resulting in useful outcome which will be taken into account for the finalisation of the A.I.S.E. SR guidelines.  Very positive feedback was provided by participants after the event, and especially the possibility on learning about best practices/challenges and extending the knowledge on CSR were appreciated. 

- Workshop Programme
- Presentations  

A.I.S.E. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) workshop for SMEs - Discussion on challenges, constraints and opportunities - 6 February 2013

The concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) continues to build momentum in discussions and global frameworks since the ISO 26000 Guidance Standard on SR (2010) and the UN guiding principles on Business and Human Rights (2011) were introduced (for further info, see 'Background material' below). In October 2011 the European Commission issued a policy paper on CSR entitled 'A renewed EU strategy 2011-2014 for Corporate Social Responsibility' acknowledging "the development of CSR should be led by enterprises themselves, supported by public authorities". 


A.I.S.E. recognises that challenges exist in developing and implementing social responsibility, especially for smaller business enterprises. To address this, a one day workshop was held on 6 February  2013 in Brussels to discuss the opportunities, challenges, and solutions associated with the introduction of an A.I.S.E. social responsibility pillar. The workshop began with an introduction and presentation from Susanne Zaenker, Director General, A.I.S.E., explaining its sustainability strategy and the objectives of the workshop. She welcomed participants from 10 SMEs as well as national association members and industry experts on the topic of CSR.  Paul Whitehouse, Chairman of the A.I.S.E. CSR Taskforce (TF), explained A.I.S.E.'s interest in undertaking social responsibility as well as describing key ongoing developments in the field of CSR. Presentations followed from a number of high level speakers. Stefan Crets, Executive Director, CSR Europe highlighted the current developments and the political landscape in Europe, while Joerg Hirte, Director Financial Administration, Delta Pronatura, a German medium sized company, provided a case study from the industry sector. Luc Hendrickx, Director Enterprise Policy and External Relations, UEAPME (European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises), outlined the status of CSR in Europe and for SMEs. Carole Welton Kaagaard, Corporate Social Responsibility Adviser, Global Compact Nordic Network, guided participants through the 'Global Compact Self Assessment tool'. The second part of the workshop was dedicated to break-out sessions. 'Challenges for SMEs and expected support from whom' highlighted the fact that clear guidance on CSR must be defined for the industry sector and also capitalise on existing practices and procedures such as the Charter for Sustainable Cleaning, Responsible Care and Stewardship programs. External factors including developments at EU and national level were also highlighted as important aspects to incorporate into the framework. Clear, transparent communication is also required by SMEs on the concept of what exactly CSR is and how it will impact their daily business. The session on 'Benefits of CSR' highlighted the fact that CSR should be seen as a catalyst for improvement that builds credibility with external stakeholders. The parallel session on 'Stakeholders expectations' focused on stakeholders' groups and the challenges associated in terms of transparency and confidentiality. The implementation of social responsibility must also demonstrate a positive economic impact with environmental and social benefits, such as job creation and security. The workshop was an opportunity to share and exchange interesting ideas as well as an arena for challenging debate on a concept that is shaping the future of our industry. All participants welcomed this valuable event. 

- Workshop Programme 

- Summary, incl. presentations  


Background material

- A renewed EU strategy 2011-14 for Corporate Social Responsibility 

- OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises (MNE only) 

- 10 principles of UN Global Compact 

- ISO 26000 Guidance Standard on Social Responsibility 

- ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work 

- ILO Tri-Partite Declaration of Principles concerning multinational enterprises and social policy 

- UN guiding principles on Business and Human Rights 

- Global Compact Self Assessment Tool

- Cefic: How sustainable Development builds on Responsible Care and Corporate Social Responsibility


Charter Best Practice Workshop - 30 November 2011

On 30 November 2011, A.I.S.E. organised in Brussels a Charter workshop which was attended by more than 50 delegates from Charter member companies, companies preparing for the Charter Entrance Check, Charter verifiers and national associations. Representatives from five Charter member companies shared case studies on best practice. Roland Schroeder from Henkel informed the audience on the management of consumer related health information; this presentation was followed by Van Dam Bodegraven's Cyril Hornikx, who shared examples on how energy consumption and CO2 emissions can be reduced. Ad Jespers gave an inside view of Diversey's sustainability with professional customers, Forbes McDougall presented P&G's programme on how to achieve zero waste to landfill, and Frank Blumenthal from Colgate Palmolive informed the participants on safe and healthy workplaces. In addition, A.I.S.E.'s Director General, Susanne Zaenker, gave an overview on political developments on EU level, especially on the European Commission SCP/SIP Action Plan.

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