WFP - Partnering for supply chain sustainability

Wed, 21/06/17

A 12-month partnership between the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and Nissan Europe delivered innovations in supply chain sustainability for the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger.

“Corporate sustainability efforts worldwide are increasingly broadening their focus from traditional ‘in house’ environmental impacts to understanding the impacts of supply chains,” said WFP Director of Management Services, Philip Ward. “As the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, WFP has recognised that its contribution to global environmental impacts goes beyond its own direct activities and this partnership has helped us take valuable steps towards managing those.”

Starting in late 2015, Nissan Europe provided funding and staff expertise, including a peer review of the methodology, thought to be the first of its kind in the UN, developed to estimate the greenhouse gas emissions from WFP’s contracted air, land and sea freight. Consistent with many companies worldwide, the exercise, which drew on global records from WFP’s logistics software, indicated that WFP’s ‘third-party’ emissions are roughly double the emissions from WFP’s directly controlled operations, spanning buildings, vehicle fleets and corporate travel.

WFP is a founding member of the UN-wide Climate Neutral Programme, starting GHG emissions reporting in 2008 and publishing yearly inventories since. Last year, this work was independently verified as complying with the leading global standard, the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.

Nissan’s support also enabled WFP to step up mainstreaming of sustainable procurement practices for goods and services purchasing, putting staff through a UN-tailored training programme delivered by sister agency UN-OPS. “Beyond the individuals who completed the training and who are now integrating new ways of working into their day to day activities, this initiative has opened conversations within WFP about integrating cost-effective sustainability principles and practices that will contribute to longer term cultural change,” said Ward.

WFP’s Environmental policy, approved in February 2017, commits the organization to further supply chain sustainability and life cycle thinking in the management of its environmental impacts with key initiatives to be integrated over the next three years.  

Categories: Procurement