One Year Anniversary: BEPI Shares Achievements During FTA General Assembly 2015


On 11 June 2015, one year after the launch of FTA’s Business Environmental Performance Initiative (BEPI) during the 2014 FTA General Assembly, Stuart Harker, BEPI Managing Director, took to the stage to deliver a progress report highlighting BEPI’s concrete achievements and next steps with members.

As part of the 2015 FTA General Assembly which took place in Brussels, a presentation shared the achievements over the past year, which included:

  • An active member engagement programme resulting in over 40 new participants with 10 of their producers already engaged in the BEPI process
  • Launch of this newsletter as an important channel sharing information
  • A number of successful Member Information Days held at FTA offices in Brussels
  • Online BEPI webinars sharing the business benefits of the initiative
  • Building productive relations with other stakeholders – particularly in China, the top sourcing country for FTA members - to enhance the maturity of the initiative

Also announced during the Assembly is a new BEPI corporate video which sets the context for BEPI and provides a summary of the key steps. In addition, an updated BEPI Information Brochure is now available that highlights the benefits for retailers, importers and brand companies to engage their producers in the BEPI process. These achievements will feed into coming priorities through 2016 which focus on enhancing member engagement, stakeholder collaborations and extending the current technical service offering.

FTA Forum: Impact of E-Commerce on Sustainability

An afternoon breakout session during the Assembly examined the sustainability impact of the rapid growth of e-commerce. The session, which united FTA members and stakeholders, covered a wide scope of positive and negative impacts, which streamed the sustainability impacts resulting from:

  • 1st Order Effects: Production and use of ICT devices i.e. tablets, smartphones, servers, etc.
  • 2nd Order Effects: Change to retail processes and markets, i.e. digitalisation of media, logistics, etc.
  • 3rd Order Effects: Unintended consequences of ecommerce, i.e. decreasing prices and increasing efficiency of ICT systems

Attendee feedback demonstrated that e-commerce represents new and uncharted territory in the field of sustainability but also showed consensus that due to the potential social and environmental impacts it could loom larger on the agenda of businesses as they strive to manage their environmental impacts. Stated Stuart Harker, BEPI Managing Director, “The sustainability impact of e-commerce is a new and complex area to most. However, e-commerce is set to bring future sustainability challenges and opportunities in areas including advanced technology, new supply chain models and distribution networks.”


Visit the event website to find session summaries, photos and other media.

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