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Symrise joins 'Biodiversity in Good Company' Initiative


Germany's Symrise AG has joined the 'Biodiversity in Good Company' Initiative and signed the 'Leadership Declaration' of the company network. The fragrance and flavor manufacturer made this announcement at the dialogue forum 'Enterprise Biological Diversity 2020' hosted by the German Federal Environment Ministry and the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation in Berlin. The initiative is a network of pioneering companies from various industries united in their shared commitment to the protection and sustainable use of biodiversity. Through this cooperation, they contribute to the implementation of the international Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

“Symrise knows how closely linked the conservation of nature is to the availability of raw materials. We are pleased to have gained an important ambassador for our network with the new membership,” said Carolin Bossmeyer, Managing Director of the initiative.

“Global biodiversity is an invaluable source of innovation and inspiration for Symrise for the development of new fragrances and flavorings as well as cosmetic active ingredients and raw materials,” says Hans Holger Gliewe, Chief Sustainability Officer of Symrise AG. “Since our raw materials and product portfolio depend on functioning ecosystems, the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity is more than just a question of corporate responsibility. It should rather be viewed as a success factor for the long-term security of our core business in a time of global environmental change,” elaborates Gliewe.

Natural raw materials such as vanilla, citrus, blossoms and other plant materials are increasingly being used to create the approximately 30,000 products in Symrise’s portfolio and are usually key functional components in customers’ end products. Symrise customers include manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics and foods as well as the pharmaceutical industry and producers of nutritional supplements, pet food and baby food. Their customers, in turn, are placing greater emphasis on natural raw materials and products, which is why a secure supply of high-quality natural resources is gaining in importance.

Given the advancing global extinction of species and the increasing degradation of ecosystems resulting from human overuse, however, there is growing doubt about the supply security of natural resources in many economic sectors, according to the United Nations. For this reason, Symrise is intensifying its Group-wide commitment to biodiversity and has set ambitious goals for 2020, which will be implemented together with strategic partners from industry, science and civil society. In addition to the integration of biodiversity principles in research and development or conservation measures at company locations, it is first and foremost a matter of ethical and sustainable procurement practices for bio-based raw materials. “Our goal is to obtain all strategic natural raw materials from sustainable sources by 2020. We place particular emphasis on extraction methods that take into account the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity as well as the strengthening of local communities,” says Sascha Liese, biodiversity expert and Sustainability Manager at Symrise AG.

Long-term development projects in Madagascar or the Amazon region of Brazil have enabled Symrise to gain valuable experience that the company wishes to share with like-minded industry stakeholders: “By joining the ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’ Initiative, we intend to set an example for other companies by giving the conservation of biodiversity the priority it deserves in our sustainability agendas,” concludes Hans Holger Gliewe.