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2016 Sustainability Report
published 2017/08/01

VAUDE invests in environmental-friendliness

Environmental protection has a very high priority at VAUDE. Therefore, we are investing in standards and technologies to allow our economic activity to become even more ecological. Our Environmental Management System is verified and certified in accordance with EMAS and ISO 14001.

Environmental protection as a key goal

At VAUDE, environmental protection is an essential element in our corporate values and goals. Our goals are to work holistically and systematically to minimize the environmental impact of our products and our business practices.

This process entails environmental-protection issues being fully integrated into all company processes. We also need to invest in technical improvements. In addition, VAUDE employees on the CSR Team work on environmental and social issues with predetermined quotas position in their departments. See also CSR Team as a Driving Force for Sustainability.

Environmental Management System tested and certified in accordance with EMAS

EMAS stands for "Eco-Management and Audit Scheme" and is one of the European Union's environmental policy instruments. EMAS is an environmental management system that helps companies anchor environmental protection firmly in all business processes. An independent environmental auditor annually verifies all published environmental data, whether the company is meeting its own standards, the evaluation of direct and indirect environmental standards as well as the suitability of the company’s environmental goals. 

To become EMAS certified, we must disclose our environmental goals and report on the direct and indirect environmental impacts of our activities. An accredited independent environmental auditor then verifies this annually updated environmental statement. We have successfully passed this test every year since 2008 and are therefore EMAS certified and qualify for the EMAS logo.

Read about our EMAS core indicators here.

The VAUDE Environmental Policy

VAUDE has an equal obligation to both economic and environmental responsibility. As a mountain sports supplier, it is important to us to protect the “playing field” of our customers and our employees - the great outdoors.

We are committed to the long-term, sustainable use of nature and to active environmental protection:

  • at our company facilities 

 - by means of resource conserving economic activity in our administrative department and  production
 - by using renewable energy and investing in the preservation of biodiversity

  • with our products and suppliers 

 - by using innovative, environmentally friendly materials and by recycling
 - by means of environmentally friendly production techniques

  • in the outdoor branch and in society at large 

 - by means of active environmental policies in professional associations and collaborative  environmental protection projects
 - by collaborating with environmental associations, universities and public projects such as the  Deutschen Nachhaltigkeitskodex (German Sustainability Code).

Our environmental activism reaches far beyond basic legal requirements. We are continuously expanding our commitment to the environment. And environmental management is a management issue at VAUDE.

Specific expenditures on environmental protection

In the annual planning of environmental goals and the budget, we earmark the necessary funds for CSR measures. This process has been established within the company. The planning and review of all environmental protection-related expenditures through the VAUDE budget process is a sensible strategy that has been proven effective.

Environmental protection expenditure in €

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CSR measures are integrated into VAUDE segment budgets. In addition, VAUDE makes funds available for the implementation of comprehensive CSR policies in a CSR budget. These include:

In addition to the CSR expenditures listed above, we employ three personnel who work on site in Asia with the Fair Wear Foundation and supervise the project, Environmental Management in the Supply Chain. These employees are not included in this reporting as they are related to a subsidiary of VAUDE Sport GmbH & Co in China as well as a representative office in Vietnam.

Many non-quantifiable activities

Nevertheless, it remains difficult to monetarily express the value of all CSR activities at VAUDE. The positions mentioned above do not include non-quantifiable activities, but these also play an important role.

They primarily include additional costs of materials with a higher level of sustainability in product development, which leads to lower margins and lower profits. Also included are presentations and lectures held by Antje von Dewitz and her team on CSR issues as well as the many ongoing efforts of employees who are not permanent members of the CSR team concerning the ecological optimization of their working operations.

CSR Quota

In 2014 VAUDE participated in a research study conducted by the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs and Zeppelin University in Friedrichshafen as a project partner. In this study, a benchmark figure was developed which companies could use to put a monetary value on their CSR activities and relate this to their turnover, number of employees or other variables: the CSR Quota.

We expected to obtain a methodology that we could put into practice and use to better quantify our CSR in this report, for example. We carefully analyzed and discussed the results of the study with the Zeppelin University. It was found that the CSR Quota was not meaningfully applicable as a method for us. The reason lies in the fact that we are convinced that the sustainability of a company increases the more it is integrated into daily business. In the CSR Quota, highly integrated aspects can, however, hardly be calculated because they cannot be cleanly defined as a pure CSR costs. We are therefore continuing to search for a suitable methodology. In the meantime, we will continue to use our projected budget to report on this issue.

GRI:   G4-EN 31
Total environmental protection expenditures and investments by type
GRI:   G4-DMA Overall
Disclosure on Management Approach Overall
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