04/03/2016

Thai Union hosts suppliers to explain Code of Conduct.

Thai Union Group PLC (TU) held a special event for suppliers in Bangkok to inform them about the Company’s strict Code of Conduct to ensure understanding and compliance.

Approximately 600 suppliers to Thai Union were invited. Thai Union management addressing the group included Mr. Thiraphong Chansiri, President and CEO of Thai Union Group and the Company’s Global Director of Sustainable Development, Dr. Darian McBain.

The presentation included a full explanation of the 12 fundamental principles of the Business Ethics and Labor Code of Conduct. Thai Union management stressed the importance of compliance and highlighted that suppliers who did not work to meet the standards established would be unable to continue working with Thai Union. Afterwards suppliers’ were invited to sign the Code of Conduct, signaling their commitment.

Mr. Thiraphong Chansiri, CEO and President of Thai Union stated, “I am delighted that so many of our partners signed a pledge to comply with our Business Ethics and Labor Code of Conduct. It is a positive sign that we are all able to move forward together in order to improve how the Thai seafood industry operates.

Business is conducted sustainably and responsibly. We want to ensure that our business partners in our supply chain understand how important these issues are to Thai Union and are fully aware of how best to comply.”

Dr. Darian McBain added: “Thai Union’s policy is clear: we do not tolerate human rights violations and we will continue to work to make sure that the workers’ in our supply chain can enjoy free and fair employment that respects their rights and dignity. Events such as this, which help our suppliers understand they must comply with our Code of Conduct, is one way we are working to achieve our goals. The Code of Conduct is an important part of our wider sustainability strategy, ‘Sea Change’ which aims to deliver real and lasting changes to the way both we and the Thai and global fishing industries operate.”

In the last 18 months, Thai Union has terminated relationships with 16 suppliers due to forced labor or human trafficking violations. The company has also reduced the number of vessels it conducts business with from over 2,000 to just 400 to drive better visibility and control of labor conditions.

The Thai Union Business Ethics and Labor Code of Conduct has been translated into 19 languages including English; Thai; Burmese; Khmer; Sinhala and Laotian. It is publicly available at: http://www.thaiunion.com/files/sustainability/code-of-conduct/20160229-tu-code-of-conduct-en.pdf 

Notes to editors: Thai Union’s Sustainable Development progress to date

  • We have launched our new Business Ethics and Code of Conduct which strictly forbids any abuses of labour or human rights in the supply chain.
  • In the last 18 months we have terminated relationships with 16 suppliers due to forced labour or human trafficking violations.
  • We have reduced the number of vessels we work with in Thailand from over 2,000 to just 400 in the last 18 months ensuing much better visibility and control of labour conditions and compliance with IUU regulations.
  • In January 2016, we took all shrimp pre-processing in-house at Thai Union offering safe and legal employment to around 1,200 workers who would otherwise be at risk in the supply chain.
  • We are implementing a full third party audit of the shrimp feed supply chain from vessel to feed mill.
  • We have trained migrant workers in our factories on their worker rights and entitlements.
  • In 2015, the Project Issara helpline was made available to workers in four of our facilities and one port and will be provided in all of our factories and ports we use by the end of 2016.
  • Our Ethical Migrant Worker Recruitment Policy, which covers the use of brokers in Thailand, is already underway and will be developed for foreign recruitment in 2016
  • We have opened two pre-schools for workers’ children in Samut Sakhorn with three more due to open by the end of 2017.