Do you like the taste of Fairtrade cocoa?

It may be at risk. It is not at all clear what the future holds for Fairtrade cocoa. The large food industry bodies involved in cocoa production are trying to develop a standard for sustainable and traceable cocoa through CEN, the European standards body. Fairtrade bodies are also, rather carefully, involved with the initiative given . . . → Read More: Do you like the taste of Fairtrade cocoa?

You've outsourced your ethics – but they haven't gone away…

After the disastrous factory fires in Pakistan last year, a general review of the effectiveness of CSR approaches to supply chain and workers’ issues was needed. A new report by the US union body, AFL-CIO, shows how poorly current supply chain auditing is serving workers. The report is particularly critical of SA8000 and the Fair . . . → Read More: You've outsourced your ethics – but they haven't gone away…

Do sustainability standards really make any difference?

My new short e-book, Making the Most of Standards, looks at sustainability standards. Which ones are important? Why are they so boring? How do they relate to each other? And how do you choose amongst the thousands out there?

GRI G4: an end to PR perfection?

Will G4 provoke a backlash? The new draft of the GRI Guidelines, G4, represents a step change in reporting. G4 is more demanding in terms of materiality, boundaries, the value chain and in other areas. This could provoke the somewhat childish response from companies that ‘it is just all too much’. And together with the . . . → Read More: GRI G4: an end to PR perfection?

Governance of the AA1000 Standards

AccountAbility has just released a document on the current and proposed governance for the AA1000 series standards. Is this what is needed?

My view is that the Community Interest Company framework is a good move. However the intellectual property associated with the standards should be moved into the CIC.

Also, there is no mention of . . . → Read More: Governance of the AA1000 Standards

What is the impact of ISO 26000?

I have produced a research report for IIED on how much difference ISO 26000 has and can make to sustainable development. It can be downloaded here.

What does 2012 have in store for sustainability?

Live discussion on the Guardian Sustainable Business website on Thursday 19th January with me, Andrew Simms, Alison Braybrook and Ed Gillespie.

Understanding IS0 26000 – a practical approach to social responsibility

My new book on ISO 26000 is now out!

With a Foreword from Kevin MCKinley, Deputy Secretary-General of ISO and a Preface from Jorge Cajazeira, the Chair of the Working Group that developed the standard, this book provides the background and some deeper insight into the interpretation and implications of ISO 26000, as well as . . . → Read More: Understanding IS0 26000 – a practical approach to social responsibility

Spots & stripes

AccountAbility (the organisation) is going through difficult times. At the moment it is like a leopard without its spots – difficult to recognise for what it is.

There is an urgent need for AccountAbility to re-create its legitimacy. It must work with its stakeholders of every stripe, and be seen to be doing so. Otherwise . . . → Read More: Spots & stripes

Everything you wanted to know about ISO 26000

Your questions on ISO 26000 answered – by me and others on YouTube.