GLOBAL – In a collaborative effort, six prominent organizations have come together to issue a joint statement on sustainability assurance, aiming to tackle pressing global sustainability challenges head-on.

The signatory organizations, including the International Accreditation Forum (IAF), ISEAL, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Independent International Organisation for Certification (IIOC), IQNET Association – the International Certification Network (IQNET), and TIC Council, are committing to work collectively to drive positive impacts through consensus-based standards and accredited conformity assessment.

This joint statement represents a concerted effort to harness the collective expertise, networks, and resources of these organizations to accelerate the adoption of sustainable practices and deliver tangible benefits to both businesses and society.

IAF lies at the heart of this global collaboration, bringing together Conformity Assessment Accreditation Bodies and entities in the conformity assessment field. Its mission is to establish a universal program of conformity assessment that reduces risks for businesses and customers, ensuring the trustworthiness of accredited certificates.

“We believe that through collaborative efforts and robust conformity assessment activities, we can facilitate the transition to a more sustainable future. The joint statement serves as a testament to our commitment to addressing sustainability challenges and promoting credible sustainability assurance,”   said Mr. Emanuele Riva, IAF Chair.

Through open dialogue, collaborative activities, and the leveraging of their extensive networks, the signatory organizations aspire to facilitate the widespread adoption of sustainable practices and generate real-world impacts.

Consensus-based standards and accredited conformity assessments play a pivotal role in establishing trust, encouraging innovation, and enhancing sustainability performance.

Accredited conformity assessment provides independent, third-party verification, instilling trust and confidence in sustainable products, practices, organizations, and services.

Meanwhile, consensus-based standards offer transparency and consistency, enabling organizations to assess their performance, pinpoint areas for improvement, and embrace sustainable practices.

Global interoperability and international trade

The joint statement emphasizes the necessity of global interoperability, recognizing the importance of seamlessly integrating sustainability practices across borders.

Accredited conformity assessment is also acknowledged for its role in promoting international trade and cooperation, as well as harmonizing evaluation outcomes.

The statement underscores the significance of competence, market-ready solutions, regulatory recognition, and scalability in achieving sustainable development goals (SDGs).

This joint statement signifies a significant milestone in the global journey toward sustainability assurance.

By fostering collaboration among the signatory organizations and offering a coordinated approach, it lays the groundwork for organizations, governments, and businesses worldwide to continually measure, improve, and enhance their sustainability performance.

Foundation FSSC and its commitment to sustainability

Foundation FSSC, a non-profit organization and member of IAF since 2017, actively contributes to this collective effort.

Aldin Hilbrands, CEO of FSSC and Vice Chair of the IAF User Advisory Committee, has been instrumental in developing the IAF Statement and aligning key stakeholders on a shared approach to sustainability assurance.

FSSC’s mission to provide trust and deliver impact within the consumer goods industry aligns with the goals of this initiative.

Notably, FSSC recently launched the FSSC 24000 Scheme for Social Sustainability, expanding its scope to include a social management system Scheme aimed at helping organizations meet social sustainability and performance requirements.

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