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At Outdoor & Sports Company Limited we are committed to the fair working conditions of those who work in the manufacture of our products.
Since 2012 we have been working with Fair Wear Foundation, a non-profit organisation that works with brands, factories, trade unions, NGOs and sometimes governments to verify and improve workplace conditions in 11 production countries in Asia, Europe and Africa.
Outdoor & Sports Company Limited are signed up to the 8-point FWF Code of Labour Practices, which are based on UN and ILO principles. FWF publicly reports on the progress of member companies towards the implementation of the Code.
Check out more information our latest Social Report & Brand Performance here.
At present it is not Outdoor & Sports Company Limited policy to publish detailed information of our suppliers or supply chain.
However, we are happy to share more general information about our supply chain such as number of suppliers, country of origin and the products physical journey on request.
The manufacture and sale of products free of harmful, toxic and hazardous chemical substances is a paramount responsibility of Sprayway. This responsibility arises from the company's accountability to protect the environment and the general public or the people who will use our products.
Restricted Substances List (RSL) protocol has been created by Outdoor & Sports Company Limited as guidance document for material suppliers and product manufacturers in our supply chain. This RSL protocol includes the wide range of chemical substances that are being regulated by governments of different countries around the world where Outdoor & Sports Company Limited products are distributed and sold. Aside from government regulations, there are also chemical substances which are potentially used in the outdoor goods industry but which are regarded to have potential harmful effects to consumer health and therefore are included in the RSL. The Outdoor & Sports Company Limited RSL covers the wide range of outdoor products from footwear, apparel, and accessory.
As well as its own RSL protocol Outdoor & Sports Company Limited also ensure that its supply chain is compliant with EU REACH regulation (Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals). EU REACH regulation was published in December 2006 and came into force in June 2007. REACH was introduced to have a proper instrument in place to protect human health & the environment, to enforce better competitiveness in the Chemicals Industry and to increase transparency. The REACH requirements are to make sure that the: "Use of a chemical substance does not adversely affect either human health and/or the environment by providing documented safety information on the substance in question". To make sure that all risks for potentially causing injury and/or health concerns to both humans and the environment by the chemical itself are identified and managed. Key elements are the: "Registration of substances of very high concern (SVHC) > 1 tonne/year"; "Increase information and communication throughout the supply chain"; "Evaluation of some registered substances"; "Authorization of substances of very high concern". Restrictions of unacceptable substances. The REACH regulation also implicates a duty of information, if an article, material or preparation contains more than 0.1% (w/w) of a substance of very high concern (SVHC). The current SVHC candidate list is accessible on the ECHA homepage: here.
Policy statement on Durable Water Repellent Finishes on our Products.
Durable water repellent (DWR) finishes are used on many products to help the surface shed water and to resist staining and contamination by oils. Outdoor gear has used DWR finishes on waterproofs and soft shells. They are also used extensively in furnishing and carpets for stain repellence. In the last ten years research has shown that the chemicals used in these DWR treatments accumulate in the environment and can cause harm. These are perfluorinated chemicals (PFC's). In particular C8 technology or long chain fluorochemicals were shown to be the most harmful. The first stage in the reduction of use of these compounds was to stop using C8 technology which we and most other outdoor companies did by 2014/15. Initially a simple switch was made to C6 technology, which is less harmful and does not accumulate in the environment. It is possible to go further and there are now an increasing number of PFC free options available. In terms of effectiveness, none of the replacement technologies are as effective as the old C8 stuff. C6 is close but does not last quite as long and the PFC free options do wear off the garment a little quicker, so reproofing is required more often. This does not affect the waterproofness of the whole garment but the surface fabric will wet out more quickly and breathability can be affected.
Like most brands we moved away from C8 technology as quickly as we could. We switched to C6 and still use this in the majority of our products. We are now looking at introducing a number of PFC free DWR technologies into our ranges. Our water resistant down uses a PFC free paraffin based treatment. For winter 2018 we will introduce PFC free DWR into our GORE-TEX range of waterproofs. We don't have target or end point for PFC -C6 DWR at the moment it is still the best for extreme conditions but things are changing fast and a lot of very clever people are working on it. When we can we will switch to treatments that have less impact on the environment.
If you would like to read further on this subject click here.
*Outdoor & Sports Company Limited are the parent company of Sprayway Ltd
Bollin Group Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement 2019
The UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the ‘Act’) requires business to state the actions they have taken during the financial year to ensure modern slavery is not taking place in the business or supply chains.
Modern slavery encompasses slavery, servitude, human trafficking and forced labour. Bollin Group Limited has a zero-tolerance approach to any form of modern slavery. We are committed to acting ethically, with integrity and transparency in all business dealings, and to put effective systems, checks and controls to safeguard against any form of modern slavery taking place within the business or our supply chain.
Our Mission is to manage an ethical, environmental and profitable business. Integrity is important to us and all of our companies and brands consider this as our most important value.
Bollin Group Limited is a successful independent family owned business. The business is the owner of a portfolio of carefully assembled brands in the Outdoor Sector and multi-channel distributor of Group owned brands and other specialist distribution of other famous brands, in Outdoor, Sports, Homeware, DIY/Garden and Watches supply.
The Group is an international business with its head office in Macclesfield, Cheshire UK. It has brand and distribution operations in the UK, Germany and Canada and owns sock manufacturing facilities in the UK and South Africa.
We design products for our owned brands, and we have strategic manufacturing partners in China, Vietnam, Myanmar and Hungary. We nominate and manage our raw material suppliers in China, Taiwan and Europe.
Our multi-channel distribution business is around high quality and reputable products and brands, and based on long standing and successful relationships.
We fully recognise and embrace our obligations and have a zero-tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking. Within the global supply chain, we have an alliance with Fairwear Foundation (FWF) for our major brands. This provides a Code of Labour Practices made up from eight labour standards:
- Employment is freely chosen- There is no discrimination in employment- No exploitation of child labour- Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining- Payment of a living wage- Reasonable hours of work- Safe and healthy working conditions- Legally binding employment relationship
Over 90% of our supply chain is audited by FWF within a 3 year period.
All external monitoring and corrective action plans are managed by our internal compliance monitoring team.
Our internal compliance monitoring team are responsible for communication and awareness training for staff associated with supply chain management.
The Group’s major brands are annually monitored through a brand performance check carried out by the Fairwear Foundation. The results are published annually on the Fairwear Foundation website www.fairwear.org.
Within our Operations we periodically use temporary labour, in particular in our warehousing activities.
We only use third party agency providers who fulfil all UK legal responsibilities. We have established internal policies and protocols to fulfil our obligations with employed staff covering;
- Equal Opportunities- Recruitment & Selection Diversity- Bullying & Harassment- Whistleblowing- Family Friendly- Policies
- Maintain our alliance and auditing schedule with FWF- Review and move towards consolidation of supply chain Introduce formal pre – business audit of supply chain compliance with any new distributors- Formalise the annual review of any 3rd party agency providers in UK Operations
This statement is made pursuant to s54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes our slavery and human trafficking statement for the year ending 31st January 2019.
This statement was approved by the Board of Bollin Group Limited
Sprayway, as part of OSC, has taken the decision to disengage from production within Myanmar and is following the Fair Wear Foundation’s guidance1, 2, underpinned by the UN Guiding Principle on Business and Human Rights3 , and the OECD Due Diligence Guidelines for Responsible Supply Chains 4, 5 .
In 2015, the Military was voted out of power when the NLD party had a landslide victory in democratic elections. This sparked a wave of overseas businesses building up their operations in the country. In 2020, there was another general election that the NLD party won. However, the military demanded a re-run of the election, citing irregularities. In January 2021, the military warned that it would intervene, and on February 1st, 2021, they retook power.
We have been closely monitoring the situation in Myanmar, working alongside the Fair Wear Foundation and other brands manufacturing in the country. Unfortunately, conducting human rights due diligence (HRDD) has become quite challenging for us. As a result, we have decided to follow the Fair Wear Foundation's guidance on responsible disengagement1, 2, and have decided to withdraw from two factories in Myanmar. This decision was made after careful consideration by our Director team, industry stakeholders, and the management of both factories.
The two factories we work with in Myanmar are privately owned by foreign companies and have no direct affiliation with military groups. Both factories were existing suppliers but moved production from China to Myanmar. We will be completing our final production run with both factories in 2024. Factory A will not produce anything for us after this time, and we will transfer our business with Factory B to their production location in Bangladesh. During this period, we will fulfil all our orders and take ownership of all raw materials.
We have maintained weekly contact with both factories, but due to limitations on visiting the country, we have had differing levels of monitoring for workers' welfare since 2021. However, we maintain a direct business relationship with both factories and have been engaged in detailed discussions with them about the possibility of ending our collaboration. Our factories have provided us with all the requested information in a timely and detailed manner.
Both factories have confirmed that our disengagement will not directly affect their workforce and the production gap is minimal due to the low volume. Additionally, communication has been open and transparent, and both factories have had the opportunity to discuss our disengagement. Sprayway continues to work with the Fair Wear Foundation, other brands and our suppliers to monitor the situation within Myanmar.
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