TOKYO — Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. (YRC) has "formulated" a procurement policy to ensure natural rubber (NR) sustainability within its supply chain.
Yokohama noted that rising global demand for NR, particularly for tires, had increased concerns about unlawful deforestation, land exploitation, human rights violations, and reduced biodiversity in growing regions.
Yokohama is participating in the Sustainable Natural Rubber Initiative (SNR-i) of the International Rubber Study Group as part of its efforts to counter these impacts.
The company also is part of the Tire Industry Project (TIP) led by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) to create a framework that ensures the sustainability of natural rubber.
Yokohama Rubber's procurement policy for the sustainable natural rubber is, therefore, based on the contents of SNR-i and the main proposals made by the WBCSD's TIP at the "World Rubber Summit 2018" in May.
The new policy outlines initiatives to be taken by Yokohama as well as those requested of its suppliers in such areas as traceability, respect for human and labor rights, and environmental protection.
The policy also includes initiatives specific to the Japanese group, such as sharing the know-how accumulated through its "forever forest project" to support compliance throughout the supply chain.
The status of initiatives being undertaken through the policy will be presented on company websites, including its CSR website, Yokohama said.
Yokohama added that it will work with all members of its supply chain to promote sustainable NR activities and further enhance the "promotion of CSR activities throughout the value chain."
Yokohama is the seventh major global tire maker to announce publicly a sustainable NR-sourcing policy. Others are: Bridgestone Corp,; Continental A.G.; Goodyear; Group Michelin; Pirelli & C. S.p.A.; and Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd.