Sustainable procurement

When selecting our suppliers, our procurement teams aim at achieving excellence in service, consistency in quality standards and access to innovation, and at increasing value for SABMiller. Equally, we are committed to engaging and workings with our suppliers to continuously raise the sustainability standards in our supply chain and to ensure the rights of workers are respected. 

We believe we should actively drive social, economic and environmental improvements in our supply chain, ultimately helping to improve society at large. We recognise that the long term sustainable development of our suppliers is critical to our joint success, and that our supply chain partners share many of the same risks and opportunities as we do. By working with our suppliers and their communities, we believe we can address those risks and develop shared opportunities to the benefit of all. We are committed to developing long term relationships with our suppliers, and actively select and favour those who share our values and sustainability commitments, outlined in Prosper, our SABMiller sustainable development ambition. 

In Procurement, we believe we have a key role to play to accelerate growth and social development in our supply chain; reduce carbon and waste across the value chain to deliver financial and environmental value; and encourage responsible, sustainable use of land for our brewing crops. This is underpinned by demanding core standards on issues such as human rights and labour standards and transparency and ethics.

SABMiller supplier code of conduct

In our endeavours to build close and equitable business relationships with our suppliers, and to actively select and favour those who share our values and our ethical commitments, we have formulated the SABMiller supplier code of conduct, which is applicable to all our suppliers globally.

The standards cover the protection of human rights and labour standards and business integrity, as well as the reduction of our environmental impact. The standards we expect of our suppliers have been developed in line with external codes such as the International Labour Organisation core conventions on human rights and the United Nations Global Compact.

Find out more about how SABMiller Procurement and our suppliers contribute towards Prosper


Working with our suppliers to meet our supplier code standards

Suppliers Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex)


As a member of the Suppliers Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex), a not-for-profit organisation promoting ethical and responsible business practices in global supply chains, we encourage our suppliers complete self-assessments online which cover labour standards, health and safety processes, business practice and the environment. These can be accessed by any Sedex customers signed up to the scheme, eliminating the duplication of separate reporting. These assessments can help suppliers to identify where they have gaps in their practices and can support the implementation of improvements.

Suppliers Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex)



SABMiller Procurement is also a member of AIM-PROGRESS, a forum for leading FMCG companies, manufacturers and suppliers who share best practice and work together to promote responsible sourcing practices. We recognise that human rights and social compliance challenges in our supply chain are more effectively addressed by working in partnership not only with our suppliers but also with our peers and other FMCGs. Within AIM-PROGRESS, SABMiller Procurement contributes towards mutual recognition, an initiative focused on reducing the burden of repeated ethical audits on our suppliers by recognising supplier audits conducted by another AIM-PROGRESS company.


SABMiller Procurement and fighting corruption in the value chain

In addition to the Supplier code of conduct, the SABMiller anti-bribery policy for suppliers details how we expect SABMiller Procurement suppliers to act to ensure that our high anti-corruption standards are continually achieved. SABMiller Procurement has implemented a rigorous process to fight corruption risk in our value chain and we require that our suppliers are not only compliant with all applicable legal and ethical standards, but that they are equally committed to stamping out corruption in any of its forms, including bribery, facilitation payments, extortion, money laundering and other illegal or unethical gratuities.

It is our strong belief that independence is a key component of an ethically-compliant procurement organisation, and, consistent with this commitment, SABMiller Procurement and its employees do not accept gifts or offers of entertainment from current or prospective suppliers.

SABMiller Procurement responsible sourcing guidelines

The Supplier Code of Conduct is complemented by Responsible Sourcing Guidelines which help suppliers to:

  • Improve practices for our key materials and move beyond minimum compliance
  • Work with us on our Prosper five shared imperatives in pursuit of value for our businesses and for society.

Responsible sourcing guidelines for packaging suppliers CO2e reduction.

SABMiller has set a global target to reduce the impact of our business in terms of waste and carbon generated, the amount of materials used, and the packaging and reuse of our beer containers. By 2020, we aim to reduce our carbon footprint per hectolitre of beer across our value chain by 25% and waste to landfill by 10%. We cannot achieve this target alone, we will achieve it through ever enhanced collaboration with our suppliers allowing us to achieve excellence in service, consistency in our quality standards, bring innovation to the market, drive value throughout the business and facilitate CO2e reductions across ever pillar of our supply chain from raw material extraction through to material recovery.

Our SABMiller Responsible Sourcing Guidelines for packaging carbon emission reduction outline how suppliers are required to support SABMiller's commitment to achieve a 25% reduction in packaging CO2e by 2020 from a 2010 baseline. This target is will be achieved through a combination of technical projects, including activities as material light weighting, or increased use of recycled content, and supply chain decarbonisation, which focuses on efficiency gains in our suppliers manufacturing process. In order to capture progress made towards the supply chain decarboniastion target all packaging suppliers are expected to provide annual submissions on CO2 emissions, their commitments to reduce emissions and activities implemented to achieve these reductions.

Carbon Disclosure Project

SABMiller invite suppliers to provide this update through submissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project. Supplier training on how to carbon reporting and carbon reduction target setting is available on request through CDP and SABMiller. The Carbon Disclosure Project are an independent industry focused carbon reporting body with whom SABMiller have been working with since 2007.

Responsible sourcing guidelines for paper based packaging materials

SABMiller is a significant user of wood fibre-based material, mainly used for paper based packaging. We believe that SABMiller has a role to play in promoting sustainable forest-management and in helping to put an end to deforestation by adopting responsible sourcing practice and encouraging these practices across our supply chain.

We aim to procure all our paper based packaging from either well-managed forests or from recycled material, whilst maintaining consistently high quality standards. To achieve our goal, we will work with our suppliers and other stakeholders to progressively increase our sourcing of virgin paper from certified sources with a full chain of custody, and promote the expansion of forest certification through our purchasing practices.

Our SABMiller Responsible Sourcing Guidelines for paper based packaging materials outline supplier requirements around providing upstream traceability for raw material sourcing and outlines the SABMiller’s expectations around information sharing on material sources and possible requirements for independent auditing.