The Nissui Group believes that corporate activities are premised on respect for human rights and will thus promote initiatives to help realize a sustainable society in which "no one will be left behind."
In September 2020, the Nissui Group formulated the "Nissui Group Human Rights Policy" in compliance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in order to further clarify its approach to respecting human rights in all value chains associated with its businesses.
Chair: Exective Officer (In charge of Risk Management, Human Resources Department, Legal Department and General Affairs Department) Members: Human Resources Department, Legal Department, Sourcing and Procurement Development Department, Food Products Production Promotion Department, Convenience Store Sales Department, Fisheries Business Department 4, Marketing Planning Department, and CSR Department (secretariat).
The Nissui Group conducted a human rights risk assessment in the form of a cross-departmental workshop in December 2020, in order to get a grasp of potential human rights risks in its value chains. This involved identifying risks in each process of its value chains from two perspectives, namely, “general and cross-industrial human rights risks” and “human rights risks specific to the fisheries industry and the Nissui Group,” and in particular, analyzing the latter risks while incorporating the viewpoint of risks by country and risks by fish species as well. Risks were narrowed down by conducting an “impact assessment” with respect to the identified risks, based on likelihood and severity in the event that the risks are materialized.
Having identified the following three risks as items of importance to be addressed specifically as a matter of priority, the Nissui Group will launch specific initiatives from FY2021 onwards in order to confirm their actual situation and mitigate such risks.
[Identified potential human rights risks]
1) Forced labor and child labor relating to raw materials of marine products (from procurement of raw materials to production)
2) Work environment of foreign technical intern trainees in Japan(production)
3) Labor Safety and Health (fishery and aquaculture)
In accordance with the Nissui Group Basic Procurement Policy and CSR Supplier Guidelines, the Nissui Group is promoting CSR procurement in order to prevent human rights risks among suppliers with which it has dealings. Its primary initiatives include holding a seminar for suppliers and requesting suppliers to respond to a self-check sheet survey. The results of the survey are tallied and presented in the form of a graph, and feedback sheets are returned to suppliers, with comments focusing on their understanding of and initiatives toward "Respect for Human Rights," informing each supplier of the areas in which they are encouraged to further reinforce their efforts going forward. Some suppliers are also subject to visits and interviews aimed at confirming their intentions behind their responses as well as their actual situations.
As the confirmation task has not been completed with all suppliers at this point in time, the Nissui Group will build a system that allows more suppliers to respond to the survey and build a system that considers the entire supply chain. In conjunction with this, the Nissui Group will make risk mitigation efforts by performing on-site checks with respect to second-tier suppliers, third-tier suppliers and so forth in consideration of the human rights risk identification results.
The Nissui Group has been engaged in numerous external communications with stakeholders and promoting activities while reminding ourselves to not become complacent. Since the first stakeholder dialogue held in 2016, the Nissui Group has held a stakeholder dialogue five times in total, including human rights in the fisheries industry's supply chain in its theme.
In FY2021, a stakeholder dialogue is scheduled to be held by inviting an expert to receive advice on the potential human rights risks identified in human rights risk assessment and how to deal with such risks.
The Nissui Group has established a whistleblowing system in which internal and external points of contact are made available to receive reports. Consultation requests, opinions, reports, etc. from employees are accepted regarding acts in breach of the Code of Ethics, acts in violation of laws and regulations and acts in breach of internal rules, including irrational discrimination and harassment based on race, religion, sex, age, nationality, social status, etc. The confidentiality of the whistleblower is protected and unfair treatment of the whistleblower is prohibited under the provisions of Nissui Group's regulations.
The Guidelines of Ethical Conduct set out in Nissui’s Code of Ethics states “respect our frank and openhearted communication environment and make an effort to maintain a sound and effective system of internal checks and balances,” and to respect fundamental human rights of individuals as well as prohibit all forms of discrimination and harassment. This Code of Ethics is laid out in the Nissui Principles and distributed to employees to ensure that awareness regarding harassment prevention is raised.
In order to prevent incidents of harassment, harassment study groups (seminars, E-learning, and similar) are being conducted. A Harassment Desk has also been set up for employees to consult, and a structure to handle any problems has been established. Nissui also conducts harassment-related training targeted at department/section heads, distributes a handbook on the prevention of harassment to employees and holds read-through sessions in each department, among others.
The Nissui Group will launch internal education on business and human rights for the purpose of not only preventing discrimination and harassment at workplaces as in the past but also instilling respect for human rights in all value chains associated with its businesses and the responsibility to respect human rights among its employees.