Monday, May 20, 2024

Chanel Leads the Cosmetics Traceability Charge With New 15-Member Consortium

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Traceability in the cosmetics industry is getting a big boost from a new alliance organized by Chanel.

Chanel has spearheaded the formation of the Traceability Alliance for Sustainable Cosmetics (TRASCE), a consortium of 15 leading cosmetics manufacturers. This initiative marks a significant step toward enhancing the beauty industry’s traceability and sustainability. The alliance, which includes renowned companies like Albéa, Groupe Clarins, Cosfibel powered by GPA Global, Dior, Estée Lauder Companies, L’Occitane en Provence, L’Oréal, Merck, Neyret, Nuxe, Pochet Group, Sensient, Shiseido, and Sisley, is set to revolutionize the way the cosmetics industry manages its supply chains.

This move comes in response to various challenges faced by the industry, including supply chain disruptions caused by health crises, climate change, and geopolitical tensions. Furthermore, the industry is grappling with increasingly stringent domestic and international regulations. To navigate these complexities, TRASCE’s members aim to foster a deeper understanding of their supply chains, identify and mitigate risks, and support a transition to more sustainable and resilient practices.

luxury perfume brands go sustainable
Photo courtesy Laura Chouette

In its statement, TRASCE highlighted the urgency of this initiative, stating that it has become “essential” to better understand the sector’s supply chains, mitigate the associated risks, and support the transition toward a “more sustainable and resilient model.”

Julien Garry, International Director of Purchasing and Packaging Innovation Development at Chanel Parfums Beauté, emphasized the importance of this collective effort: “The essential and demanding work of mapping our supply chains carried out in recent years has allowed us to understand the main limits of the exercise. It is sometimes quite difficult for a single client to convince distant tier suppliers to commit to this process, when we do not exchange directly with them or when they do not meet the same regulatory requirements. Based on this observation, we proposed that the actors of the sector join forces to trace our supply chains as far and as quickly as possible.”

TRASCE’s primary objective is to enhance traceability on a large scale. To achieve this, its founding members will collaborate to map their entire supply chains using Transparency-One, a digital platform provided by ISN. This platform will detail every aspect of the supply chain, from the origin of ingredients or components to the activities and locations of suppliers. Importantly, suppliers will retain ownership, security, and confidentiality of their data shared on this platform.

woman with L'Occitane shampoo bars
Courtesy L’Occitane

The alliance targets three main challenges in the industry: strengthening collective understanding of supply chains, assessing related social and environmental risks, and defining actions to aid suppliers in their transition. “Through shared digital tools and close collaboration, we have an opportunity to move the needle in transparency and elevate how we source responsibly, with attention to potential impacts on people and the environment,” said Meghan Ryan, Executive Director of Responsible Sourcing at the Estée Lauder Companies.

Karl Hensen, Quality Director Surface Solutions at Merck, praised the diversity and commitment within TRASCE: “This joint commitment is a real asset. We are convinced of the need to align the industry on a single traceability tool, and to implement a common method. By doing so, TRASCE could even act as a role model for other industries, which face the same challenges regarding supply-chain transparency. The harmonization and multistakeholder dialog is essential to promote the objectives within the TRASCE consortium as well as contributing to Merck’s overall sustainability strategy.”

TRASCE is looking at the bigger picture, developing a collective approach to assess social and environmental risks in supply chains. The goal is to interpret collected data and establish common plans for progress. In the long term, the consortium said, it aims to develop a “collective approach” to the risk analysis of social and environmental risks in supply chains, to interpret the data collected and define common progress plans.

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