As the first Open Up theme comes to an end, we can now look back on some of the important messages we can take away from what we’ve covered so far. To recap the things we’ve discussed in the Introduction to Transparency theme, we’ve written up a brief ‘Question and Answer’.
Keep an eye on the site starting next week when we will begin a brand new Open Up theme. It’s going to be a very interesting one, so be sure to stay tuned to www.fairfood.org/openup.
Transparency refers to the full disclosure of information about rules, procedures and practices at all levels within food production and supply chains. For a company to open up and become transparent they need to make information regarding their rules, procedures and practices readily available to the public and to its stakeholders in particular so that unacceptable practices can be spotted and dealt with. Furthermore, this information must be timely, relevant, accurate and complete in order for it to be used effectively.
One of the greatest benefits to a company that becomes transparent is acceptance from the society in which they function. Companies gain trust from consumers and, in many cases, an increase in their revenues. It shows that they are aware and take account of the impacts that they make.
Also, as we learned in “What’s to Lose”, being transparent is a risk-management tool. It shows that a company is accountable to their stakeholders, concerned about the risks repeated through their supply chains, and that they care about building confidence in their brand and products.
When it comes to judging the efforts of a company towards greater transparency, it is important to stay critical. You have to question the promises that a company makes and check whether those promises are followed up by decisive actions. You can assess if a company is making a genuine effort by checking whether or not the company presents targets that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely; and whether or not they report on the progress made so far.
A quick and easy step is to “Like” Fairfood International on Facebook or follow us on Twitter. Also, be sure to share our articles or updates. We are in constant dialogue with companies around the world, encouraging them to become more sustainable. When you show your support for Open Up and the work we do, you are showing companies that transparency is important to you.
Image: Marc Worrell (CC License)< Back