It’s become increasingly apparent that the idea of sustainability is here to stay. Be it climate change, air pollution, decreasing wildlife diversity, or deforestation, it’s hard to ignore the damage being done to the planet. Sustainability, the need to establish the sustainable models necessary for both the human race and planet Earth to survive, is anchored on three pillars: the economic, environmental and social. For the sake of business and global trade, these require focus on profitability, ensuring the lowest possible impact on the environment, and the adoption of an ethical approach in dealings with all stakeholders.
As businesses worldwide begin to endorse a more sustainable outlook in current and future endeavors, creating a seamless global supply chain is now crucial in an interconnected world where trade is at the center of economic activity. Supply chain management is the oversight of materials, information, and capital as they move from supplier to manufacturer to wholesaler to retailer to consumer. Indeed, the inherent combination of sustainability and supply chain is the common variable for value and success – for business as much as for society. By spreading good business practices around the globe, it has enormous potential to contribute to big and small markets and sustainable advancement.
Sustainable supply chain methods may sound like a buzzword and an idea that will slowly fade but really, sustainable supply chain practices have been around for years. The early 1900’s fascination with engineering was the primary inspiration for finding ways to make things more effortless and comprehensible. Fast forward a few decades to the digital revolution and it seems as if the whole world is on board with the idea of transparent business transactions, increased client satisfaction, and lowered production costs. Studies show that societies with a highly developed supply chain infrastructure are able to trade goods quickly and at low cost. As global markets expand beyond borders and global companies into more continents, the laws of supply and demand are being redefined rapidly.
Corporate social responsibility laws have integrated somewhat naturally into this atmosphere of global trade as developed and undeveloped economies push toward a more sustainable approach regarding trade and investment policies. Although lack of transparency continues to exist despite these elements, it is because of sustainable supply chain management and corporate social responsibility that we can ensure quality of raw materials, origin of goods and sustainable productions efforts, and contribution to underdeveloped societies through economic activity and job creation.