5Procuring raw materials has also remained a complex and demand ing task Climate change and the constant introduction of new analyti cal methods are contributing factors And there is another issue besides what goes into the teabag The bag itself was is and will always be a sub ject of scrutiny Safe environmentally friendly packaging will continue to demand our attention in the coming three years Our aim is to use as little packaging material as possible Any materials we do use should then be recyclable an ambitious goal that concerns the entire recycling system Challenges objectives The topics I have touched on were the major challenges of the present re porting period but naturally there were many more issues that motivat ed us For a more detailed description I would ask you to turn to chap ter 8 where we take stock of objectives that we have achieved or have yet to achieve In that chapter you can also gain an overview of our concrete plans for the next few years We may not make any exciting claims like We will do away with packaging altogether in three years time but not for lack of vision Announcing inflated targets that can t be met is just an other version of a popular game called greenwashing Our society is beginning to recognise that sustainability is the only answer to ecological and social threats But growing awareness also increases the danger that sustainability will become a buzzword We intend to coun teract that with this report You are invited to get to know us To find out what we actually do To find out what we don t do To find out what works and what doesn t In conclusion I would like to say that sustainability has been a very successful policy for our company but one that we naturally must continue to develop Should this report lead to a dialogue with you then we will have achieved much I look forward to hearing from you Kind regards Ulrich Walter Managing Partner Chairman of the Board I m thinking here of corporate social responsi bility CSR tests by consumer magazines the German Federal Government s National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights and not least of the retail sector which has been taking this complex issue very seriously and which we support through our work Sustainable socially responsible fair Together with Kiwa International Cert GmbH a certification agency we have closed a gap by developing the new Nachhaltig Sozial Fair sustainable socially Responsible Fair cer tificate Unlike other fair trade seals which only apply to individual products this provides com prehensive information about the management of our entire supply chain Now you can hear the rustling of the whole tree and not just the indi vidual leaves As a partner in the pilot certification project in 2017 we were required to furnish evidence that we systematically purchase raw materials un der fair conditions The inspectors examined whether we had integrated compliance with social accountability standards into our pro curement criteria Another audit took place in 2018 which marked the beginning of the regu lar certification cycle and thus the achievement of an important objective The introduction of new EMAS and GRI standards posed another challenge during the present reporting period Overall I can attest that in recent years certi fication requirements have become ever more complex and demanding for medium sized manufacturers like Lebensbaum

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