Search Report
2018 Sustainability Report
published 2019/08/01

Suppliers as partners

VAUDE producers and suppliers are contractually obligated to meet the ecological standards of our MRSL. We work together with them in partner-based relationships to minimize their environmental impact.

Environmental Stewardship Program for Suppliers

VAUDE is also consistently moving towards more sustainability by raising awareness, training and providing support for environmental management in the supply chain. We have already done a great deal of pioneering work in the industry in this area and are on the right track.

»Our experience shows that suppliers are very willing to implement environmental technologies when they become aware of the dangers to people and the planet that their older methods entail. Instead of simply testing finished products for hazardous substances, we go down this truly sustainable path together with our suppliers «

Bettina Roth, Manager Quality and Chemical Management at VAUDE

Backgrounds and details here

Material manufacturing is often problematic from an ecological perspective

In its supply chain, VAUDE differentiates between producers (manufacturers of ready-made clothing, Level 1) and material suppliers (Level 2). We only have a direct (contractual) business relationship with our producers. However, we stipulate the selection of material manufacturers to a large extent – see Our Supply Chain.

In production, the materials are then assembled to create the VAUDE finished product (sewn, HF welded, etc.). This, of course, consumes energy, water and chemical additives, and creates waste, wastewater and emissions.

Pilot project for a higher level of environmental protection

However, the most serious environmental impacts occur in the upstream stages of production: the manufacturing of textile materials and even further upstream to the cultivation of plant fibers or the mining of raw materials such as oil, from which synthetic fibers are obtained.

These production steps are very resource intensive. The consumption of water, energy, materials and chemicals, as well as emissions such as wastewater and exhaust have a major impact on the environment and the people living there.

Environmental Management System in the Supply Chain (Update: 18 November 2016)

Focusing on a higher level of environmental protection

Despite our current high standards, there is still much room for improvement when it comes to environmental and resource protection, compliance with international environmental standards and the implementation of a systematic environmental stewardship program.

As a founding member of the federal government’s "Partnership for Sustainable Textiles" VAUDE is setting a good example and heading in the right direction: In collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) VAUDE launched the project "Environmental Stewardship in the Textile Supply Chain" in 2015. Within the framework of the Deutsche Entwicklungsgesellschaft DEG, which promotes the “" program, VAUDE supports material suppliers in introducing sustainable systematic environmental protection and in continuing to improve the measures they already have in place.

More details on the project

The aim of the project was to sensitize and empower selected material suppliers of VAUDE in the Asian procurement markets (e.g. Vietnam, China, Taiwan) so that they can more easily meet our environmental requirements.

The factories and their employees received practical assistance for independently implementing measures with regards to corporate environmental and sustainability management. Helping them help themselves.

Workshop Chemicalmanagemant

We want the companies to recognize the advantages inherent in clean production: healthier employees, higher product quality, better living conditions in the region, and last but not least, a reference as a qualified producer for international competition, which can be used for winning new customers.


Best Practice examples of participants and discussions with experts help to establish practical relevance for the facility and allay reservations for the participants.

What did the project involve?

  1. Taking stock with supplier self-assessments and evaluation by VAUDE using external experts 
  2. Selection of ten pilot suppliers
  3. The creation of assistance and training materials (documents in local language, graphics, explanatory films)
  4. Implementation of training and individual consultations on-site in the local language
  5. Evaluation and anchoring of the results in the respective facilities, including responsibilities distributions and monitoring systems
  6. Promotion and strengthening of synergies through networking of suppliers among each other and with external experts, publication of findings from the project

What did we do?

Create your own infographics

What did we achieve?

The improvements achieved by the 8 participating material suppliers were in some cases significant.

VAUDE Checklist Sustainable supply chain

The project was very ambitious and lasted two years. The project ended in August 2017, and we now want to extend it to the entire supply chain. We are trying to find other outdoor brands interested in this approach in order to achieve a greater number of suppliers and thus even greater environmental protection in our supply chain.

With this project, we were nominated for the CSR Award of the Federal Government in the category: Responsible Supply Chain Management.

Committed to compliance with standards

All VAUDE producers are contractually obligated to comply with ecological minimum standards. This includes, among other things, the Manufacturing Restricted Substance List - MRSL.

Link to management of harmful substances , Link to our supply chain

Using VAUDE's internal Material Policy, we make a pre-selection of materials and technologies and influence the selection of our material suppliers.

Through the system partnerships of many of our material suppliers with bluesign® system and through the Fair Wear Foundation (FWF) we are very familiar with the situation, the weak points and development opportunities of most of our producers and material suppliers.

Selection and evaluation of VAUDE producers subject to a well-thought-out process that follows strict criteria (see also Supply Chain)

GRI:   308-2
Negative environmental impacts in the supply chain and actions taken
GRI:   103
Management Approach
Related stories
VAUDE Green Shape
VAUDE Eco Collection Read more
We are proactive in our fight against hazardous substances
Clear strategy for the management of chemicals Read more
Focus wastewater management
VAUDE Greenpeace Detox Commitment Read more
Around half of the globe, yet still eco friendly?
Small amounts of emissions due to transport by ship Read more
Active climate protection: VAUDE operations are climate neutral
Curbing climate change Read more
Energy management in the supply chain
Certified energy management Read more
Share on
Who writes this report?
Read more