Sustainability at Peter Greven Physioderm
The topic of sustainability has basically been important to Peter Greven since the very beginning, even if it has only been explicitly named as such in recent years.
While ecological and economic goals in the area of sustainability are already defined in qualitative terms, social goals still need to be precisely defined.
The Peter Greven Group
The family business Peter Greven was founded in 1923 and is now led by the third generation.
More than 450 employees work for the Peter Greven Group worldwide. This also includes numerous apprentices, e.g. Warehouse Logistics Specialist (m/f/d) or Machine & Plant Operator (m/f/d). Sustainability Manager Verena Koch is responsible for the entire Peter Greven Group. Employees of different nationalities are employed in the company. The age structure is well distributed. Numerous management positions are held by women.
Responsible Care Global Charter
In April 2018, the Peter Greven Group signed the Responsible Care Global Charter of the International Council of Chemical Associations (ICCA) and thus supports the voluntary initiative for sustainable corporate governance in six aspects:
- Leadership culture within the company
- Protection of people and the environment
- Strengthening of management systems
- Involvement of business partners
- Consideration of stakeholders
- Contribution to sustainability
Voluntarily doing more than laws and regulations prescribe - this is a matter of course for us as part of our corporate and social responsibility.
Peter Greven Physioderm (PGP), based in Euskirchen, Germany, offers comprehensive solutions as a globally-active supplier in the field of occupational skin care. The Physioderm®, GREVEN®, LORDIN® and Myxal® product ranges are the basis of holistic skin care management. Deeply rooted in the region, PGP develops and manufactures its skin care products in Germany. PGP is always working to further develop its solutions in the field of occupational skin care and is the innovation leader in this industry in Germany.
Within the value chain, PGP has been using the international standards for quality ISO 9001 and environment ISO 14001 for decades.
As PGP relies to a large extent on natural oils in its formulations and not on mineral oil, palm kernel oil and its derivates are important natural raw materials, which are mainly used in its cleansing products. According to its special internal palm oil sourcing policy, PGP is focusing on the increased use of certified palm kernel oil that can be proven to come from sustainable sources. This is done in cooperation with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), whose main objective is „to promote the growth and use of sustainable palm oil through cooperation within the supply chain and open dialogue with its stakeholders,“ as it is stated in the statutes. PGP has therefore received RSPO supply chain certification. Since 2010, Peter Greven GmbH & Co. KG is also a member of the RSPO.
Employees are trained annually not only on the subject of sustainability; in other areas, further education is the most important objective of the regular training courses, e.g. on the subjects of quality and data protection.
In addition to the company pension plan, PGP offers its employees bonuses and allowances as well as a personnel sale as non-cash benefits. Flexible working time models, e.g. in the form of time accounts or family-friendly working time arrangements such as flexitime and home office, are possible. Regular exchange between management and employees takes place through an employee interests project group.
In addition to the ergonomic design of workplaces, external fitness activities are financially supported.
Sustainability is part of PGP‘s corporate DNA: over 90 percent of the ingredients used come from renewable sources. Since the beginning of 2021, a very powerful photovoltaic system with 320 kWp (kilowatt peak) has been in operation. The system produces 289,000 kWh of electricity per year - equivalent to the average energy consumption of about 72 four-person households. In the first stage, around 43 percent of the self-produced solar energy will cover a part of the electricity consumption at the PGP site; the remaining approximately 57 percent will be fed into the grid.
In the second step, the construction of a storage system is planned, with which the photovoltaic system could cover the complete energy consumption at the PGP site. Among other things, the electricity flows into a double charging station, so electric and hybrid vehicles can be charged at the company‘s parking lot in a completely CO2 -neutral manner. A second charging station is planned for the future, as the company fleet will partly be converted to hybrid vehicles.
In the area of raw materials and packaging, PGP has set qualitative sustainability targets. Specifically, these include lighter/smaller packaging and the use of plastic recyclates and recycled cardboards.
Collapsible and Neptune bottles, offer the advantage of better emptying as well as lower packaging weight compared to hard bottles and canisters, so they generate a lower volume of waste. In this context, PGP‘s closed dispensing systems should also be mentioned, which ensure a better longevity of the products and eliminate the need for chemical cleaning of the dispensers when the bottles are replaced, since dispenser and product do not get in contact with each other.
Social an Economic Responsibility in the Local Area
The Peter Greven Group makes annual cash and in-kind donations for ecological, social and charitable purposes. In addition, regular sports sponsorship is provided.
During the Corona pandemic, PGP donated 3,500 tubes of hand care cream to the German Red Cross. The Euskirchen Red Cross district association collected them in November 2020 at the plant in Euskirchen.
Social an Economic Responsibility within the Supply Chain
To ensure social and ecological quality standards of key suppliers, PGP has a long-term sustainable purchasing strategy. All suppliers or the entire supply chain are involved here. There are clear decision-making criteria for the selection of suppliers. In the procurement or production of raw materials, the criteria and requirements for suppliers are defined in terms of social and ecological responsibility.
Important suppliers are audited on a regular basis. In some cases, preference is given to suppliers who are more likely to meet social or ecological requirements, even if these are less economically advantageous. Both social and environmental sustainability criteria are taken into account in product development. All suppliers must assure compliance with minimum social standards. These include, for example, respect for human rights and no child or forced labor. In addition, suppliers have to assure that they comply with minimum ecological standards.
Some products have been awarded sustainability seals.
ECOSAN® in 1000 ml Neptune and 2000 ml collapsible bottle
Already in 2017, PGP ’s washing lotion ECOSAN® was the first product in the category „shampoos, shower gels, soaps and other socalled rinse-off cosmetic products“ awarded with the renowned BLUE ANGEL eco-label.
To improve product and process quality, targets and measures are defined that go beyond the legal requirements. In order to obtain more sustainable products, cooperations with external institutions exist as well. Any violations of human rights, laws or internal regulations can be recorderd in an anonymous reporting system. To improve occupational safety, targets and measures have been determined that go beyond the statutory requirements, for example regular campaigns such as posters, incentives, etc.
For users of our products and for decision-makers inside and outside the company, separate product information for each of our products is available, including information on the ingredients (INCI). These can be found on our product websites.
Through PGP‘s membership in various associations, we have the opportunity to contribute to important topics by participation in working groups, preparation of statements, supply of data and participation in surveys.
Cooperation with Universities
During the development of our products, we often work very closely with scientists from various universities.
Active Pearls®: University of Erlangen-Nuremberg
PROTEXSAN®: University of Freiburg
OptiTens®: Osnabrück University