What is responsible sourcing?

Knowing where raw materials come from, how they are produced, and addressing environmental and social issues such as deforestation, human rights, and climate change through choice of suppliers and how we work with them can help ensure that we have a positive social and environmental impact.

UPM has roughly 20,000 suppliers globally covering a broad range of businesses ranging from small local companies to large international corporations based in many different cultures. Managing these issues across such great variety of suppliers requires a consistent approach to responsible sourcing.

At UPM Communication Papers, we use many different raw materials and services to produce our papers. Being committed to taking account of their environmental, social and ethical impacts is an integral part of being a responsible business.


The elements of responsible sourcing

Transparent supplier requirements

Ensuring that all our suppliers operate responsibly according to agreed standards

Supplier risk assessment

Purchasing from qualified suppliers and carrying out audits of suppliers based on potential risks

Cooperation for continuous development

Working together with our suppliers and partners to improve standards of practice

Transparent supplier requirements

We've defined our minimum requirements concerning social, environmental and economic responsibility in our UPM Supplier and Third Party Code, and we expect our suppliers to implement the same requirements in their own supply chains, extending the influence. 

In 2021, 86% of UPM’s total spend (including both direct and indirect materials and services) was qualified under the UPM Supplier and Third Party Code. In the case of raw materials, the figure was even higher, at 96%.

All our wood, pulp and recovered paper suppliers are continuously evaluated for their performance in environmental issues, human rights and local community involvement. Wood used in our products comes from sustainably managed forests and from legal sources and is either FSC- or PEFC-certified, or complies with the due diligence requirements if these international standards.


Percentage of supplier spend qualified against UPM Supplier and Third Party Code

Status 2022


Target 2030

Raw material spend qualified against UPM Supplier and Third Party Code

Status 2020


Target 2030

* Information taken from annual report 


Supplier risk assessment

Risk assessments of existing and proposed suppliers are an essential way of identifying possible shortcomings in supplier performance and compliance. Human rights and environmental risk can be heightened because of the country of origin, any commodity specific risks and the complexity of the supply chain.

UPM is a member of the Together for Sustainability (TfS) initiative, which promotes sustainability practices within its supply chains. TfS has established a standard approach for evaluating and improving the sustainability performance of suppliers.

* Information taken from annual report 



Over the past years

supplier audits conducted yearly based on identified risks
contractor reviews carried out yearly with a focus on working conditions


In 2030

Continuous supplier auditing based on systematic risk assessment practices

Cooperation for continuous development

Supplier audits and joint development plans are key tools we use to ensure that we make progress together.

When a non-conformity is identified, a supplier is required to take immediate corrective action. Active follow-up and sharing best practice with our suppliers helps them improve their performance. And when corrective measures are neglected or prove insufficient, UPM may decide to discontinue a partnership.


Learn more about responsible sourcing

Supplier and third party code

Transparency and compliance are key to responsible supply chain management and sourcing.

Learn more on upm.com

Download Supplier and third party code



What are the raw materials of paper and how is it made?

The basic ingredient of paper has been the same for almost 200 years: Cellulose fibres derived from wood, the structural tissue in trees. What makes wood so special as a raw material is that it is one of the world's greatest renewable resources. Furthermore it can be used to produce products which are easily and readily recyclable. The properties of wood fibre and the products, such as paper, which can be made from it, are a blueprint for sustainable products of the future. You could say that paper is ahead of it’s time. 

Learn more, download our brochure 


The Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains – Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz (LkSG)

UPM seeks sustainable growth and enables its customers and consumers to make more sustainable choices. Sustainable, responsible and compliant business activities in both manufacturing and supply chains are firmly anchored in our corporate strategy, as is the responsible use of natural resources and renewable raw materials. Respecting human rights,  preserving circular bioeconomy and safeguarding resource efficiency are important cornerstones of our responsible operations and our value chains. UPM operates in Germany through its businesses UPM Communication Papers, UPM Specialty Papers, UPM Raflatac, UPM Biochemicals and UPM Biocomposites (ProFi).

The Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains (Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz, LkSG) requires companies to conduct appropriate human rights and certain environmental due diligence in their supply chains. The due diligence obligations for companies include:

  • maintaining a risk management system,
  • conducting regular risk analyses,
  • issuing a policy statement,
  • laying down preventive measures,
  • taking remedial action,
  • establishing a complaints procedure and
  • documenting & reporting.
  • Further information on the Supply Chain Act can be found on the website of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.
    Information about UPM’s handling of the Supply Chain Act can be found on our Certificate Finder – Statements: link


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