2016/07/28 - Press

Sustainable development: a new step

Dev-Mag.pngIn its 2015 report, Virbac adopted the most recent version of the GRI standard for sustainable development. The reasons behind this change and the related benefits explained by Éric Marée, chairman of the executive board.

Is sustainable development a natural step for Virbac?
Absolutely. Ensuring that Virbac’s development stands the test of time has always been a main concern for the Group. Virbac is first and foremost a family company and the profoundly human values of its founder have always been the foundation upon which company strategy is built. The ability to envision the long-term and to act accordingly is part of the company’s genes.

Any other reasons?
Yes. Offering veterinary medicines and, more generally, animal health products, naturally places Virbac at the heart of the food chain. With customers, veterinarians and farmers being increasingly concerned about their impact on the environment and human health, the company must conduct its operations accordingly. Because Virbac is gaining increased visibility due to its rapid growth, now more than ever, from both a social and environmental standpoint, it must lead by example, and ensure that its development adheres internationally to certain fundamental principles, while incorporating development targets.

What about communication on this subject?
Virbac has been communicating on its commitments since 2008 via a dedicated report, and since 2011 has adopted the GRI (Global reporting initiative) international standard for sustainable development reporting. Today, Virbac has transitioned to the new GRI 4 format, which replaces the GRI 3 format and has the advantage of generating sustainable development data more clearly related to the company’s features.

In what way?
Virbac’s sustainable development report contains close to 80 indicators and is structured around three areas: social, economic and environmental performances. The principal change in the GRI 4 is the increased focus on subjects that represent the most important issues for both Virbac and stakeholders (customers, petowners, regulatory authorities, suppliers, collaborators, shareholders, communities, etc.). Three themes emerged: innovation, relationships and customer partnerships, the quality of products and services.

How beneficial is this?
The GRI 4 addresses the transparency obligations of the French Grenelle II law, while anticipating a future European directive in this domain. It also brings Virbac in line with the fundamental principles of international organizations: OECD, UNGC.... Furthermore, through the regular analysis of performance indicators, GRI 4 helps initiate improvement measures and achieve steady progress in the three areas of sustainable development.