Principle 2

Businesses should make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses

Novozymes' management systems, commitments, and positions

Novozymes' approach in 2009

Reference to GRI G3 performance indicators

The Novozymes Touch

  • Vision, values, and fundamental principles
  • Support for the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  • Support for the United Nations Global Compact

People policy
Purchasing policy 
Social responsibility policy

Position on diversity and equal opportunities
Position on human rights
Position on responsible purchasing

Please refer to Principle 1 for scope and general approach regarding Novozymes’ support of human rights and labor rights.

Novozymes’ minimum standards of social responsibility cover freedom of association, nondiscrimination, working hours, wages and benefits, disciplinary measures, child labor, and forced labor.

Responsibilities and activities
Regional presidents within Novozymes have overall responsibility for human rights and labor rights aspects in their particular regions, whereas the person responsible for a particular site has operational responsibility. Our Sustainability Development Board, which is made up of line of business representatives, has responsibility with regard to activities in line of business. Please refer to Novozymes’ overall approach to sustainability.

Novozymes’ business units conduct annual self-assessments, which are carried out on the basis of our global minimum standards. The minimum standards make it possible to identify better practices and share experiences between business units, thereby improving performance locally. The anchoring of the minimum standards in line of business through self-assessments is reported to the Sustainability Development Board, which reviews and decides on further action in collaboration with the Sustainability Development Department. In 2009, training in and communication of the minimum standards have been conducted at local sites to allow for emphasis on the most relevant standards locally.  

Audits of business units' compliance with internationally recognized human rights and labor standards are an integrated part of the internal auditing program. Each year, Novozymes’ internal audit panel selects business units to be audited with regard to their compliance with human rights and labor standards. Audit findings are reported internally to Executive Management, and follow-up on corrective actions is integrated into our audit procedures/system, which are verified by third-party auditors. Novozymes does not report audit findings externally.

Local social responsibility strategies
Beyond ensuring compliance with global minimum standards, Novozymes’ sites develop local social responsibility strategies. In 2010, Novozymes will launch a comprehensive global initiative targeting social performance. The initiative will further integrate social responsibility into day-to-day activities by rethinking approaches at sites, in regions, and in business units, as well as toward individual employees.  

Human rights and supplier performance
To further expand the scope of sustainability and managing human rights in our supply chain, Novozymes has completed implementation of a comprehensive supplier performance management system in 2009. The system covers all aspects of our supplier performance management from initial approval of new suppliers to ongoing performance evaluation. The approach is based on an integrated set of evaluation criteria, including environmental, employee health and safety, human rights, and business ethics aspects. The system allows us to provide performance profiles on all significant suppliers to Novozymes based on criteria such as spend, country of production and purchasing category, and helps the purchasing function focus its efforts on the suppliers who typically pose the biggest risk. In 2009, 88% of total purchase spend was covered by the approach, and significant suppliers have been screened on human rights issues including freedom of association, nondiscrimination, working hours, wages and benefits, disciplinary measures, child labor, and forced labor. In 2010, action plans for noncompliant suppliers will be developed in order to improve performance.


See also:

Learn more about how Novozymes manages human rights in practice at

For related information on Novozymes’ approach to human and labor rights, please refer to Financial and sustainability discussion and Environmental, social, and knowledge data.

Learn more about Novozymes’ approach to Responsible purchasing at

See the list of institutions that are Novozymes' key stakeholders regarding Global Compact.

HR 1
HR 2
HR 3
HR 4
HR 5
HR 6
HR 7
HR 9

SO 5

My Report