Ethical trade accreditation for Amorim SA

Thursday, 19 August, 2004
Marlene Truter
The major supplier of cork closures to the South African wine industry - Amorim Cork South Africa - has achieved accreditation by the Wine Industry Ethical Trade Association (WIETA).

WIETA - modelled on the UK retail sector's Ethical Trade Initiative - was established in 2002 to improve the working conditions of employees in the South African wine industry. The association enjoys strong support from key UK retailers such as Tesco, Waitrose, Sainsbury, Marks & Spencer and Somerfield.

WIETA CEO, Nicky Taylor, says the accreditation was of "enormous significance, as Amorim was the first of the key suppliers to the South African wine industry to comply with its code of social responsibility and ethical labour practices."

The accreditation was granted after a comprehensive audit by a multi-disciplinary team had proved that Amorim adhered to detailed criteria with regard to ethical conduct and health and safety in the workplace.

Amorim South Africa's MD, Joaquim Sá, said his company was honoured to be accredited under the principles of the code.

"Our brand has a very strong image that portrays quality and service. This is based on our knowledge that a safe and fair working environment impacts favourably on worker productivity and performance and that it sustains a venture such as ours in the long term."

Tesco's spokesman, said they support companies who aim to achieve this certification. "Tesco is one of the major players in social responsibility and a member of WIETA, and recognises how important it is to see that both wine producers and key suppliers are working together to meet our values. We believe that by adopting and communicating this code we, in partnership with our suppliers, are taking practical steps towards improving social conditions in the developing world."

Somerfield's associate director for quality assurance, Stephen Ridge, congratulated Amorim on achieving WIETA certification, while John Corbet of the Wine & Spirits Association in the UK said "it was admirable for companies to be able to demonstrate their adherence to social responsibility policies and to contribute to a safer working environment."

Issued by Marlene Truter Communications
Tel (021) 882 8626 / 083 294 6060

On behalf of Amorim Cork SA
Contact: Joaquim Sá
Mobile 083 463 7051