REWE Group Sustainability Report 2018

Principles and Guidelines

REWE Group has defined fundamental values, norms of behaviour, the Guidelines for Sustainable Business Practices and various raw material-specific guidelines so that responsible action takes root in the company as well as in the supply chains.

GRI 102-16:

Values, principles, standards, and norms of behavior

With the goal of “The Best Performance – for Customers, Retailers and Employees”, the fundamental values of REWE Group were formulated in the mission statement drawn up in 2008:

  • We act independently according to the ideas of community!
  • We work for the customer – we are at the heart of the market!
  • We welcome new directions. Standing still means going backwards!
  • We act with integrity and treat one another with respect! We keep our word!
  • We strive to find the best solution, make considered decisions and act consistently!
  • We are aware of our responsibility and act sustainably!

Rules governing the upstanding behaviour of all employees and managers including the Management Board and the Supervisory Board members are specified and bindingly formulated in REWE Group’s code of conduct. The code is also designed to serve as a guide to those who work with REWE Group.

The foundations of sustainable activities at REWE Group are the Guidelines for Sustainable Business Practices. They take concrete form in the principle “We are aware of our responsibility and act sustainably!”. As a result, it provides binding orientation for employees, managers, business partners and suppliers.

In its Human Rights Policy Statement, REWE Group commits to strengthening human rights and preventing human rights violations. This commitment applies both to its own business activities and to the global delivery and value chains.

Specific guidelines set standards

The guidelines of REWE Group represent an important instrument in the work aimed at making the supply chains of critical raw materials more sustainable. In these, the company sets standards covering the supply of raw materials like cocoa, palm oil and fish. It also establishes a deadline for the transition to more sustainable raw materials. REWE Group had approved the following guidelines by the start of 2019:

  • Guideline for Fairness: : Defines processes for strengthening human rights and improving working conditions (download).
  • Guideline for Fish, Crustacean and Shellfish: Defines standards for wild fish and fish from aquaculture, including demanding transparency criteria (download).
  • Guideline for Cocoa: Defines requirements for the procurement of cocoa and explains the transition to certified sources that has already taken place (download).
  • Guideline for Orange Juice: : Defines goals and measures for more sustainable orange juice production and defines obligations of business partners (download).
  • Guideline for More Environmentally Friendly Packaging: : Defines REWE Group’s operational framework for making store-brand packaging more environmentally friendly (download).
  • Guideline for More Sustainable Textiles: Defines requirements for the social and environmental standards of textile product suppliers (download).
  • Mission Statement on Animal Husbandry of the Future: Formulates fundamental principles and goals for implementing species-appropriate animal-husbandry practices (download).
  • Guideline for Natural Stone Products: Defines an implementation framework for improving social and environmental standards in the production of natural stone (download).
  • Guideline for Palm Oil and Palm Kernel Oil Products: Sets a demanding implementation schedule for the transition to sustainable palm oil and defines requirements that go beyond established standards (download).
  • Guideline for Organic Products: Defines standards for organic store brands that exceed the requirements of the EU organic farming label in many cases (download).
  • Guideline for Soy in Animal Feed: Requires imported soybean meal to be non-genetically modified and calls for the examination of potential replacements with domestic protein sources as a key requirement (download).

In 2019, further guidelines will be published and existing ones updated.

Information on the status and goal achievement for the guidelines is reported in the Raw materials in focus – Food and Raw materials in focus – Non-food sections.

GRI 102-17:

Mechanisms for advice and concerns about ethics

After introducing a professional anti-corruption system in 2007, REWE Group decided in 2010 to set up an autonomous, decentralised compliance organisation: The Corporate Department of Governance & Compliance bundles and coordinates all compliance-relevant activities in REWE Group. A compliance officer serves as an expert contact partner in each business unit and country company.

The aim of REWE Group’s Compliance Management System (CMS) is to prevent violations of laws and internal company rules and, thus, to preclude damage to the company and personal liability of the company’s bodies and employees. To achieve this objective, a compliance programme has been developed. This programme comprises a number of preventative measures, including risk assessments, training and consulting. Violations of legal regulations or internal rules, particularly regarding corruption, can be reported to the responsible compliance officers or an external ombudsman using a combine-wide whistleblower system. The officers are contact points for all employees of REWE Group or third parties who have reason to think that such violations have occurred (for more information, also see the Compliance section).

More topics:

REWE Group Portrait

GRI 102-1 – 102-7, 102-10

Employee Structure

GRI 102-8, 102-41

Supply Chain

GRI 102-9

Risk Management

GRI 102-11

Industry Initiatives and Memberships

GRI 102-12, 102-13

Sustainability Strategy

GRI 102-18 – 102-21

Stakeholder Dialogue

GRI 102-40, 102-42 – 102-44

Materiality Analysis

GRI 102-45 – 102-47, 102-49

Report Profile

GRI 102-48, 102-50 – 102-56

Economic Performance

GRI 201


GRI 205, 206, 307, 419

Public Policy

GRI 415

Data protection

GRI 418