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Key relationships – Industry bodies and business

We partner with industry and business bodies to provide input into issues and regulations that affect and are relevant to our businesses and industries. We also support and partner with industry initiatives aimed at promoting the use of our products.

One of our longest-standing relationships is with the United Nations Global Compact, to which we have been a signatory since 2008.

  Shared priorities   Our response
  • Issues that affect the sustainability of our industry including woodfibre base, carbon taxes, energy and emissions
  • Ethical issues impacting business
  • Energy issues in general, particularly government proposals on carbon taxation
  • The impact of increased regulations on business
  • The benefits of our industry and our economic contribution to society
  • Social and environmental credentials of our products

Globally in 2019, we:

  • Became a member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition and will use its sustainability measurement suite of tools, the Higg Index, to drive environmental and social responsibility throughout our supply chain. With this membership, we join over 240 global brands, retailers, and manufacturers, as well as government, non-profit environmental organisations, and academic institutions, that are collectively committed to improving supply chain sustainability in the apparel, footwear and textile industry.
  • We continued our work with the Cambridge Institute of Sustainability and other partners on blockchain technology for timber certification
    (seeOur key material issues for details of the Trado project) and the development of new low-carbon pulp technology (deep eutectic solvents).
  • We are an investor in the Forests in Focus tool in the USA, which strives to assess and evaluate forest-based risks within wood baskets for customers, investors and stakeholders, using credible scientific public data collected by state and federal government agencies.
  • We celebrated 20 years of partnership with Borregaard of Norway LignoTech South Africa which extracts lignin from Saiccor Mill’s effluent stream. Output is sold in South Africa and exported to countries in Africa, Asia Pacific, the Middle East and South America for a range of applications including dust suppression, concrete additives, pelleting agents in animal feeds and mineral granulation aids.
  Opportunities for value creation
  • Develop sustainable, transparent supply chains
  • Maintain and expand markets for our products
  • Dispel myths and enhance understanding of our environmental and social credentials
  • Promote dialogue.
  Challenges for value creation

High cost of membership and resource allocation involved in certain memberships.


Participating in dialogue about forests

In 2019, Sappi joined the steering committee of The Forests Dialogue (TFD). This organisation is focused on promoting constructive stakeholder dialogues to spur collaborative action on the highest priority issues facing the world’s forests. In 2019, TFD was particularly active in a land-use dialogue initiative. This is a multi-country engagement platform coordinated by TFD, together with a variety of local and global partners, that seeks to enable responsible business, improve governance and create inclusive development in landscapes at risk of deforestation. These dialogues were convened in Ghana, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Tanzania.


Our membership of industry associations

Sappi Limited

Business Leadership South Africa | Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership | Paris Pledge for Action | Programme for the Endorsement of Forest CertificationTM (PEFCTM) | Sustainable Apparel Coalition | Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI) | The CEO Initiative | United Nations Global Compact | The Ethics Institute


Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) | Eurograph | European Joint Undertaking on Bio-based Industries | Print Power | Save Food | The Alliance of Energy-Intensive Industries | The Two Team Project (focusing on breakthrough technology concepts in the industry that could enable a more competitive future) | TwoSides


American Forests and Paper Association (AF&PA) | Paper and Paper Packaging Board | Agenda 2020 Technology Alliance | Forest Products Working Group | Forest Stewardship CouncilTM (FSCTM) | Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) | Sustainable Forestry Initiative® SFI® | The Recycling Partnership | TwoSides


Business Unity South Africa | Energy Intensive Users’ Group | Fibre Processing and Manufacturing Skills Education and Training Authority (SETA) | Forestry South Africa | Forest Stewardship CouncilTM (FSCTM) | Packaging SA | Paper Manufacturers’ Association of South Africa (PAMSA) | Recycle Paper ZA | Printing Industries Federation SA (PIFSA) | Manufacturing Circle | South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) and local chambers of commerce and industry | TwoSides | National Business Initiative (NBI)

Sappi Forests

Institute for Commercial Forestry Research (ICFR) | Founding member of the Tree Protection Co-operative Programme (TPCP) | Biological Control of Eucalypt Pests (BiCEP) ( | Eucalyptus Genome Network (EUCAGEN) | CAMCORE