Bridging Permission-To-Operate to Sustainability
Author: Lott, John
Source: Kenan-Flagler Business School, UNC-Chapel Hill
Recent incidents of unsafe consumer products, from pet food to computer batteries to spinach, have placed the importance of robust systems for ensuring products are safe for the environment, society, and the people that use them. Many companies are now embracing the tenets of product stewardship to minimize and often eliminate the business and societal risks that accompany disregarding it.
The author stipulates that product stewardship – defined as the responsible and ethical management of the health, safety, and environmental aspects of a product throughout its total life cycle – is a key step in creating a sustainable company. Also, to be effective, product stewardship must be treated as a business process and be integrated into daily business practices of a company. The author cites his long experience working in DuPont’s product stewardship systems as a positive example of this practice.
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