In the selection of suppliers, Beter Bed Holding is highly concerned with both the commercial and the ethical side of the relationship. The absolute precondition is that both the supplier and its suppliers adhere to all applicable laws and rules in their countries. The way of doing business must be compatible with the standards and values of Beter Bed Holding, which are based on the United Nations Global Compact Code.
Strategic suppliers are asked to sign the supplier code of conduct. All suppliers of all Beter Bed Holding formulas with whom the organisation has a long-standing relationship have signed the code of conduct. All strategic suppliers are based in Europe. At least two suppliers are audited every year to determine whether they are conforming to the Beter Bed Holding's supplier conditions.
Stakeholders have stated that they expect large market parties such as Beter Bed Holding to play a pro-active role in chain management and focus within it mainly on the materials used, or to be used (wood, iron, down and cotton). The next evident step on the way to a circular economy is that the hazardous substances in mattresses, in particular, need to be phased out. This point is raised in regular meetings with suppliers. It is important for Beter Bed Holding that animals are treated with respect. What this means for the organisation is, for instance, that sheep are shorn in an animal-friendly manner for bed textiles and that down is not plucked from live birds.
One of our strategic targets for 2016-2020 is to achieve fewer suppliers with fewer SKUs, but more strategic suppliers. The aim of strengthening relationships with strategic suppliers is to build better collaboration and achieve common goals in fields including sustainability. Managing the supply chain will be a joint effort between the company and its suppliers, which makes strategic alliances with suppliers so important. This is why Beter Bed Holding intends to participate in EMBED (see Strategy and objectives), an initiative of the EBIA which is affiliated to one of the strategic suppliers of the company.