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Partnership Approach

Engaging openly with stakeholders and establishing leadership approaches for transparency and disclosure is a fundamental part of our approach to sustainability.

When you have a well-developed approach to sustainability, as adidas has, engagement is rarely a one-off event: stakeholder relationships develop over time and, along the way, the nature of the dialogue changes and matures. Where there is a positive and open approach to engagement, perspectives can be shared, differences respected and, at times, new partnerships forged.

Greenpeace Detox Campaign

In 2011, Greenpeace International initiated the 'DETOX Campaign' calling for the zero discharge of all hazardous and persistent chemicals at all points in global supply chains: from the cotton fields to the mills and dye houses that make the fabric, up to the garment production. Greenpeace has directed its campaign primarily towards sporting goods companies and well-known apparel brands in the belief that they can act as a catalyst for change for the whole industry. As part of their campaign, Greenpeace demanded that targeted companies publish a formal commitment to suppot the goal of 'zero discharge' and issue an individual roadmap specifying timelines and steps to meet this goal.

From the outset, adidas entered into an in-depth engagement process wiht Greenpeace. We publicly committed to support Greenpeace's goal but also stressed the fact that the management of chemicals in mulit-tiered supply chains is a complex challenge, which requires many actors to play a role in achieving effective and sustainable solutions. 

More information on chemical management can be found here.

Date Description Document
2014, Jun Interim report on adidas' individual roadmap to eliminate hazardous chemicals  Download PDF
2013, Oct Statement by adidas on the International Leadership Board Ranking published by Greenpeace Download PDF
2011, Nov adidas individual roadmap toward zero discharge of hazardous chemicals Download PDF

adidas Verifies FSC® Certification for Laces

adidas unveiled its 'Clean Classics' sustainable footwear collection in September 2020. The sneakers' uppers are made from 70% recycled materials. Renewable and reclaimed rubber is used for the sole. All processed materials, including adhesives and dyes, are free of animal ingredients. The laces are made of paper.

adidas intended to source FSC-certified paper for the laces as a sustainable source material for the 'Clean Classics'. Currently, we are not able to fully trace whether this certified paper actually went into the production. We are in close contact with our suppliers and the certifier FSC to clarify this. In addition, we will further expand our cooperation with FSC in the future with regard to the procurement of sustainable raw materials.

As an immediate measure, we do not use any reference to FSC certification in the context of product presentation in our online store. More information about FSC can be found here.


Trade Unions and Freedom of Association in Indonesia

Indonesia has been one of our most important sourcing countries in Asia for many years. As a result, we have seen steady progress and improvements in terms of labor conditions in the country. Nevertheless, we are aware that our suppliers face certain challenges in meeting our workplace standards and the expectations of international non-governmental organizations.

One area where we are working closely with organizations such as Oxfam Australia, the ITGLWF and local NGOs and trade unions is the development of a freedom of association protocol in Indonesia. adidas took the lead role in a committee of suppliers and brand representatives that was established in 2010 with the aim of working closely with the trade union movement in Indonesia. This aims to establish a basic framework for the implementation of trade union rights in the workplace. The official signing of the protocol took place in Jakarta in June 2011. This event was hailed by the international labor rights movement as a "historic agreement" between sportswear brands, suppliers and unions.

We are confident that this protocol will set a crucial benchmark for suppliers, and that its provisions can align the different expectations. We hope it will reduce misunderstandings between management and union representatives regarding union activities, affiliation rights, etc., and as a result, improve labor relations in the industry overall. As part of our commitment to the protocol, we have called on all our suppliers to sign the protocol and agree to implement the requirements set out in it. adidas has also actively promoted the adoption of the protocol to other international companies sourcing in Indonesia.


Other examples of our interaction with the civil society:

Date Description Document
2021, Mar Statement on the situation in Myanmar Download PDF
2020, Apr adidas’ supply chain measures during the covid-19 pandemic Download PDF
2020, Mar adidas’ response to research findings published by the Australian Strategic Policy Institution (ASPI) Download PDF
2017, Jul Answer to ‘Clean Clothes Campaign’: PT Panarub Dwikarya Benoa Link
2015, Oct Stakeholder Dialogue Report: ‘Human Rights Impact of Major Sporting Events and the Role of Sponsors’ Link
2015, Aug Response to WRC Recommendations on Yuen Yuen and Social Security in the People's Republic of China: This document is part of the summary of independent complaints we received in 2014.  Download PDF
2012, Sep Letter to universities in North America about the activities related to the PT Kizone factory. Download PDF