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Towards an international standard on sustainable procurement

March 21, 2016

“Sustainable Procurement aims to reduce the adverse environmental, social and economic impacts of purchased products and services throughout their life”

Increasingly, government and private enterprises are incorporating sustainable procurement policies into their corporate governance. Consumers, shareholders and all stakeholders are more aware of the conditions under which goods and services are produced and the long term effects of their manufacture and consumption. These concerns are often reflected in the choices retail consumers make, particularly when the media focuses on averse events both overseas and within Australia. As a consequence, retailers are increasingly having to audit their supply chains to ensure that best practices are adopted at each step of the procurement process.

For the past 3 years delegates from 47 countries have been working to produce a voluntary set of international standards, to provide guidance to governments and private enterprise. ISO20400, the first international guidance standard on sustainable procurement is nearing completion and will be published in 2017. From 2 to 6 May 2016, Australia will host the 5th international meeting of the project in Sydney where international delegates will join the Australian working group.

On the 2nd of May, a public Global Forum focusing on Sustainable Procurement is being held in Sydney where some of the world’s leading practitioners will share their experiences and discuss ISO 20400. Interested supply chain specialists and other retail executives are invited to register and attend the forum.

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