Code of Conduct, life-cycle analysis, GHG footprint – sustainability is a fairly complex subject. In order to help our consumers and all other users understand our website’s and publications’ contents, we collected the most important terms on the matter of sustainability at Beiersdorf in this glossary.
Wordle Glossary Sustainability

A - F


Association des Industries de Marque (AIM) is the name of the European brands association, while PROGRESS stands for Program for Responsible Sourcing. AIM-PROGRESS is a round table of leading Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) manufacturers who have joined together in order to facilitate and promote responsible sourcing practices and sustainable supply chains.


Biodiversity is the term applied to all plant and animal life living in a particular environment. It can relate to the number and variety of species or the different environments in which they are present.

"Blue Production Centers" Initiative

Beiersdorf’s "Blue Production Centers" initiative aims to make the company's production centers more sustainable in terms of energy and water consumption, as well as waste reduction.

Code of Conduct

Beiersdorf developed a Code of Conduct for its employees and a Code of Conduct for suppliers. The aim is to outline transnational compulsory provisions which everyone working at or with Beiersdorf are bound to obey, such as the absolute avoidance of child labor or discrimination. Furthermore the Codes of Conduct help to reduce uncertainties in the everyday work as well as to comply with the statutory obligations. Beiersdorf’s Codes of Conduct describe the principles that form the basis for our decisions and actions for all employees and suppliers worldwide.

Co-generation Systems

Cogeneration is a process by which energy or heat which is created as a byproduct is actually used for a specific purpose, such as the generation of process heat to be used on the production line, rather than just lost into the atmosphere.


Compliance means for each department at Beiersdorf, from Controlling to Packaging, to abide by applicable laws, norms or standards as well as internal guidelines. At Beiersdorf it is the management’s responsibility to ensure Compliance. An effective compliance system requires the active involvement of all employees. As such every employee at Beiersdorf is requested to participate in the improvement of this system, e.g. by participating in compliance trainings.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is part of sustainable business practice and means that companies and other organisations take responsibility for social and environmental concerns of their own volition that goes beyond their legal obligations. 


Diversity is about equality for all regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, physical condition etc. as well as being open to the varied perspectives of colleagues. As a truly global company, Beiersdorf lives diversity as one team. We value difference because a diverse and multicultural work force fosters an inclusive company culture and enhances Beiersdorf’s competitiveness in global markets.

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency relates to efforts to reduce the amount of energy required in order to complete a certain process or task.


Environmentally-friendly refers to a process or product that is not harmful, or less harmful to its environment. Beiersdorf is a keen proponent of promoting the concept of being environmentally-friendly throughout its entire supply chain.


ESMAS stands for "Environmental and Safety Management and Audit Scheme". ESMAS integrates the key elements of ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 into a company-based standard. All the key features of the international standards are included, supplemented with specific in-house requirements. Auditing is performed by external audit agencies. The certificate is granted upon audit of an effective implementation of ESMAS.


The "Forum for Sustainable Palm Oil" (FONAP) is an organisation of companies, associations and NGOs that jointly wants to develop sustainable solutions to improve practices in the palm oil sector. The goal of the Forum for Sustainable Palm Oil is to significantly increase the share of segregated, certified, sustainably produced palm oil in the German, Austrian and Swiss markets, and to make 100% certified palm oil available to these markets as quickly as possible. The Forum's goals and initiatives include exacting certification systems such as RSPO, ISCC and the Rainforest Alliance. Its main activities are developing suggestions for improvement of existing certification systems, increasing the transparency of available palm oil products, derivatives and fractions, and providing specialised information about certified Palm (kernel) oil for its members and the general public.

FSC® certified cardboard

FSC® is short for Forest Stewardship Council, an organization working to advance the practice of sustainable forestry all over the world. This label on the cartons confirms that all the wood fibers used in its manufacture have been continuously tracked from the forest of origin, in accordance with the FSC®'s Chain of Custody standards. As such you can be sure the wood pulp used has been sourced in an environmentally-friendly and socially responsible manner. Beiersdorf has continuously reduced the use of folding boxes across the Florena range, saving nine tons of cardboard a year. All remaining folding boxes come from responsibly managed forests and carry the FSC® Mix label. Beiersdorf has also started to introduce FSC® certified cardboard for all folding boxes across the NIVEA range.

G - N

Global Reporting Initiative

GRI stands for Global Reporting Initiative. It is a non-profit, network-based organization which focuses on sustainability reporting and sustainable development. It encourages companies to boost their level of sustainability by amplifying their own sustainability reporting efforts. The GRI network consists of all types of organizations, including corporations, NPOs, rating agencies and many more.

Global Warming Potential

Global Warming Potential is a value which indicates the capacity of a greenhouse gas to trap heat in the atmosphere. They are also used to describe how such gases could affect global warming over various time periods or spans (normally 20, 50 and 100 years). Most Global Warming Potentials decrease the longer the time span considered.


A system of standards, rules, guidelines, procedures and policies which a company uses in order to ensure responsibility, fairness, and transparency in all its relationships with all its stakeholders.

Greenhouse Gas Footprint

The Greenhouse Gas (GHG) footprint indicates the amount of GHG that is discharged during the production of a good or service.

Green IT

Green IT aims at designing the entire product lifecycle of information and communication technologies in way that is environmentally and resource friendly – from manufacturing through to operation and waste disposal. It seeks to protect the environment by using more efficient devices, using them more intelligently, and making appropriate adaptations to existing systems. The goals are to reduce consumption of raw materials and energy, as well as decreasing CO2 emissions and costs. 


GreenPalm is a certificate trading program. It was created to manage environmental and social issues linked to the production of palm oil. It is a supply chain option that growers of sustainable palm oil can choose to sell their oil through once it has successfully passed through the Roundtable on Sustainable Palmoil (RSPO) certification process. GreenPalm enables sustainable palm oil producers to earn more for their crop. Buying oil which has the GreenPalm logo means making a positive contribution to the production of certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO) and palm kernel oil (CSPKO).

GRI Index

This document enables stakeholders and other readers to see at a glance which indicators of the corresponding Global Reporting Initiative standard have been reported on. From 2015 onwards, Beiersdorf is reporting its sustainability performance according to the GRI G4 reporting standard.

ISO Standards 14040 and 14044

ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 are international standards for life-cycle analysis (LCA). They specify requirements and provide support and direction on how to carry out LCAs. They cover various aspects such as goal and scope definition, impact assessment and reviewing the LCA.


Not all waste is suitable for recycling. Waste that cannot be recycled back into the economy is disposed of in special sites – so-called landfills. Various classes of landfill are used for the controlled, long-term disposal of such waste either above or below ground.

LEED® Rating System

The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating System assesses whether a building is environmentally-friendly. This is done from a "whole building" perspective and covers a building’s entire life-cycle. It can be applied to buildings that are still in construction or which are already built. Using this rating can help to ensure that the building is as environmentally-friendly and sustainable as possible.

Life-cycle Analysis

Life-cycle analysis (LCA) is a method of measuring the environmental characteristics and impact of the different stages of a product’s entire life-cycle, from the obtaining of raw materials through processes such as production and distribution, to use in the home and final disposal or recycling. The results of such assessments help to provide a detailed picture of the environmental footprint of the product and to highlight potential areas where environmental improvements can be made.

Mass Balance

Mass Balance is a supply chain model approved by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). In this model sustainably sourced certified palm oil is monitored throughout the supply chain. It may be mixed with other non-certified oil at some stage meaning that not all of the sustainably sourced palm oil is in the end product, but it is still possible to identify the amount of certified and non-certified oil.

Materiality Analysis

The identification of key material issues is linked to the concept of materiality in sustainability reporting. Key material issues are economic, environmental and societal issues which have a strong impact on the success of a business and which are also highly relevant to external stakeholders.

"Nivea cares for family"

"NIVEA cares for family" is the social initiative of Beiersdorf’s flagship brand. It aims to strengthen families by building competencies for children, empowering mothers, and creating opportunities for families to spend quality time together.

O - Z

OHSAS 18001

The globally recognised British OHSAS 18001 (Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series) standard describes requirements for occupational safety management systems. It is structurally very close to standards for managing quality and environmental protection (ISO 9001 and ISO 14001). OHSAS 18001 is recognised worldwide as the leading instrument for defining the requirements of occupational health and safety management systems, and is widely used by certification agencies for audits and certification.

Palm (Kernel) Oil

Palm (kernel) oil is obtained from oil palm tree fruits or seeds. It is mainly used to make margarine, soap and other cosmetics.

Renewable Energy

Energy which is generated from sources which are naturally regenerative such as solar, wind and hydro energy.


Beiersdorf is participating in the "Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil" (RSPO), which comprises of various stakeholders from the palm oil industry such as producers, traders, Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) manufacturers, retailers as well as environmental and social non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The RSPO was established in 2004 with the aim of encouraging the production and use of sustainable palm oil.

Scope (1, 2, 3) CO₂Emissions

Scope (1, 2, 3) CO₂emissions are a method by which a company can classify and therefore better understand its emissions. There are three different scopes. Scope 1 covers all direct emissions and includes those resulting from the production of products or, for instance, arising from the use of company owned vehicles. Scope 2 covers emissions generated from electricity, heat or steam which a company has bought. As such these are indirect emissions. Scope 3 has a broader focus and covers upstream emissions (e.g. those from the supply chain that are linked to production such as waste treatment) and downstream emissions (e.g. post production emissions such as disposal and recycling).


Sedex stands for "Supplier Ethical Data Exchange" and is an international collaboration platform. The platform's aim is to promote sustainability and minimise risks in the supply chain. It offers registered suppliers an efficient way to share information and audit reports about working conditions, occupational health & safety, corporate integrity and environmental management with their registered customers, thus significantly reducing the efforts they must devote to preparing and submitting reports and audits. For customers, the platform is an efficient way to identify and reduce ethical risks in their supply chain.  

Segregated Sourcing of Palm Oil

Segregated sourcing of palmoil means to purchase an amount of sustainable sourced material, like palm oil, which is kept separate throughout the supply chain. So the sustainably sourced palm oil is guaranteed to be physically traceable to a certified source. 


Any individual, group, association or entity that is in some way connected to an organization. A stakeholder can be someone who exerts influence over the direction a company takes e.g. a shareholder or alternatively someone who is affected by the organization’s actions e.g. a person living close to where the company is located. Other examples of stakeholders are employees, consumers, and suppliers.

Sustainability Product Scorecard

Beiersdorf has developed its own sustainability product scorecard in order to be able to accurately measure the environmental impact of our products’ packaging and formulas. The scorecard examines key elements such as the amount of non-fossil ingredients, the impact on water toxicology, the reduction in packaging material, and the use of recycled materials.

Sustainable Sourcing

Sustainable sourcing means sourcing materials in a socially and environmentally responsible way that seeks to preserve both the supply of the material and the environment of the areas where it is sourced from.

Value Stream Method

The Value Stream Method (VSM) assists organizations in documenting, assessing and ultimately improving the material flow that is required to create a product. It helps companies to identify all the steps in a process so that those steps which do not add value (i.e. waste) can be reduced or even eliminated.

"We care."

"We care." is Beiersdorf's sustainability strategy, which supports Beiersdorf in pursuit of its business goals whilst simultaneously helping it to reduce the company's environmental footprint.  The strategy focuses on issues which are key to Beiersdorf's stakeholders and which contribute to the success of the company. Our approach is centered on three distinct areas –"Products, Planet, People" - thus ensuring that the company's sustainability efforts continue to deliver meaningful, long-term and wide-ranging impact.

"Women in Leadership"

"Women in Leadership" is an initiative of the DAX 30 (companies listed on Frankfurt's blue-chip DAX index). The aim of this concept is to significantly (and voluntarily) increase the number of women working in executive positions by 2020. Within the context of this framework, Beiersdorf has voluntarily committed itself to increasing the number of women in leadership positions. In Germany for instance, the aim is for women to account for around 30% of senior executive positions in the Consumer Business Segment by 2020.

Zero Accident Program

As part of its on-going commitment to employee health and safety Beiersdorf has a company-wide "Zero Accident" program which - in addition to focusing on reducing accidents - also aims to eliminate unsafe working conditions and promote safer working behavior through active communication and guidance.