5. Responsibility

Accountability within the company’s management with regard to sustainability is disclosed.

A sustainability team comprising employees from all specialist departments has been set up to drive forward the topic of sustainability within the company. The members identify the key content of the sustainability report and raise the awareness of sustainability among all employees. This continually guarantees the broad participation of our workforce in sustainability management. The core team comprises the executive management, the HHV operational manager, and the joint sustainability / quality management officer.  

The joint sustainability / quality management officer is responsible for sustainability reporting. This person confers with the managing directors on a regular basis. Internal communication concerning sustainability is kept effective and efficient through flat hierarchies and short, direct communication paths.

6. Rules and Processes

The company discloses how the sustainability strategy is implemented in the operational business by way of rules and processes.

Even though the company has not yet formalized an actual sustainability strategy, we introduce and implement individual measures and goals through process instructions. The process of continuous improvement is ensured by an integrated management system focused on quality, food safety, and energy management. This is monitored and confirmed in annual external and customer audits.  

Regular meetings of senior management, including the executive management, ensure information exchange and progress of the on-going investment and improvement projects.

7. Control

The company states how and what performance indicators related to sustainability are used in its regular internal planning and control processes. It discloses how suitable processes ensure reliability, comparability and consistency of the data used for internal management and external communication.

Simon H. Steiner, Hopfen, GmbH has been collecting annual data since 2012 on all performance indicators relevant to sustainability, especially including those from production. Relevant indicators are those that relate to the previously identified material topics. The data are updated periodically in the company’s sustainability report. We are currently using the following performance indicators:
Employees: Fluctuation rate, gender structure, age structure, length of service, number of hours worked, occupational illnesses, work-related injuries
Environment: Energy consumption, waste, water abstraction, CO2-relevant emissions, quantity of packaging materials, quantity of process materials  

The absolute throughput quantities in the works are subject to fluctuations depending on the harvest. Therefore relative output figures are more meaningful. The data are primarily based on the quantity in metric tons of raw hops processed in a calendar year and the energy used to process them. We also differentiate between the hop pellets and hop extracts product groups because they are produced in separate works. All steps in the refinement processes are fully monitored as part of quality checks.  

By collecting data right down to the detail, we can ensure control and achievement of our sustainability goals.

Key Performance Indicators to criteria 5 to 7

Key Performance Indicator GRI SRS-102-16: Values
The reporting organization shall report the following information:

a. A description of the organization’s values, principles, standards, and norms of behavior.

We are a reliable and fair partner in our business contracts and for our employees, while striving for sustainable success and profit. The values and principles guiding our actions are set out in our Code of Conduct:

Our employees form a community and treat people within and outside the company in accordance with a shared understanding of values and principles. This creates relationships based on a spirit of partnership, in which our customers, suppliers, employees, and the people around them are all involved. We foster respectful, fair communication and reject any kind of discriminatory or offensive statements, judgments, and harassment. It goes without saying that we uphold all conventions and applicable legislation protecting human rights. This also applies to the principles of the United Nations Global Compact and the guidelines of the International Labour Organization (ILO).  

In all our markets, we consider the ethical values and self-image of our local business partners and respect their culture-specific customs. We comply with all legal regulations at our production locations and expect the same from our partners and suppliers. This also includes compliance with the applicable customs and export control laws.  

We reject any form of corruption and all activities that infringe laws against money laundering. Fairness in competition is indispensable in our view. This means anti-competitive agreements and any abuse of a market-leading position are not in line with the business policies of the company and its business partners. All contact with internal and external partners is transparent and fully traceable. We expect our business partners to observe and apply the laws applicable to the protection of personal data.

8. Incentive Systems

The company discloses how target agreements and remuneration schemes for executives and employees are also geared towards the achievement of sustainability goals and how they are aligned with long-term value creation. It discloses the extent to which the achievement of these goals forms part of the evaluation of the top managerial level (board/managing directors) conducted by the monitoring body (supervisory board/advisory board).

Currently, there is neither a remuneration system nor a non-monetary incentive system in which sustainability goals are integrated. A sustainability strategy has not yet been implemented in the company's business strategy, therefore no concrete sustainability goals currently form part of the evaluation performed by the company’s senior management. It can be assumed that such goals will be integrated during the development of a sustainability strategy.

Key Performance Indicators to criteria 8

Key Performance Indicator GRI SRS-102-35: Renumeration policies
The reporting organization shall report the following information:

a. Remuneration policies for the highest governance body and senior executives for the following types of remuneration:
i. Fixed pay and variable pay, including performance-based pay, equity-based pay, bonuses, and deferred or vested shares;
ii. Sign-on bonuses or recruitment incentive payments;
iii. Termination payments;
iv. Clawbacks;
v. Retirement benefits, including the difference between benefit schemes and contribution rates for the highest governance body, senior executives, and all other employees.

b. How performance criteria in the remuneration policies relate to the highest governance body’s and senior executives’ objectives for economic, environmental, and social topics.

This indicator has commercial competition implications and therefore will not be reported.

Key Performance Indicator GRI SRS-102-38: Annual total compensation ratio
The reporting organization shall report the following information:

a. Ratio of the annual total compensation for the organization’s highest-paid individual in each country of significant operations to the median annual total compensation for all employees (excluding the highest-paid individual) in the same country.

This indicator has commercial competition implications and therefore will not be reported.

9. Stakeholder Engagement

The company discloses how the socially and economically relevant stakeholders are identified and integrated into the sustainability process. It states whether and how an ongoing dialogue takes place with them and how the results are integrated into the sustainability process.

As part of an internal stakeholder analysis, the sustainability team has identified the following stakeholder groups to be of the highest relevance to HOPSTEINER:  
Regular meetings and discussions with all these interest groups have been an essential part of how have done business since the very start of the company and have proved a crucial factor in our success. In addition to personal contact with growers, customers, employees, and shareholders, who shape our daily business operations, we offer all stakeholders regular opportunities to take part in developing sustainability within our company. This takes place, for example, at HOPSTEINER events, forums, and webinars, where the focus is on the interests of individual stakeholder groups. Of course, we maintain a continuous scientific and professional dialog with numerous committees and institutions from the industry. We are present and active in relevant associations concerned with the hop sector, for example, the Deutscher Hopfenwirtschaftsverband e.V. In addition, we use the following means to engage in dialog with the various stakeholder groups:   Customers/breweries:

Suppliers / growers:

Employees:

The objectives and requirements for stakeholder communications arise out of the current market situation. Continuous dialog with all stakeholders provides for regular feedback and exchange of views on sustainability topics.

Key Performance Indicators to criteria 9

Key Performance Indicator GRI SRS-102-44: Key topics and concerns
The reporting organization shall report the following information:

a. Key topics and concerns that have been raised through stakeholder engagement, including:
i. how the organization has responded to those key topics and concerns, including through its reporting;
ii. the stakeholder groups that raised each of the key topics and concerns.

As a company, we firmly believe in maintaining regular and close contact with all stakeholders. This dialog is part of our DNA and our way of working. Stakeholder feedback is continuously reviewed and, once the information has been checked internally, it is assimilated into our daily working practices.  

The most important topics as far as our customers are concerned are contract fulfillment, flexibility, and quality. Contract fulfillment and flexibility are also relevant for our suppliers. The topic of hop breeding plays a significant role for our growers. We discussed the topic of reporting in detail with our banks. Both sides see great advantages in open dialog. Material topics for employees are job security, efficient working processes, and flexible working hours.

10. Innovation and Product Management

The company discloses how innovations in products and services are enhanced through suitable processes which improve sustainability with respect to the company’s utilisation of resources and with regard to users. Likewise, a further statement is made with regard to if and how the current and future impact of the key products and services in the value chain and in the product life cycle are assessed.

The impacts of our main products on the social and ecological aspects of sustainability were described earlier in Criteria 2 and 4.  

The effects of extreme climatic conditions and extraordinarily long dry periods combined with high temperatures in recent years have resulted in large fluctuations in yield and quality in hop growing. Our own breeding program develops new, more resistant and productive hop varieties that require much less use of pesticides because of their tolerance and ability to adjust to climatic change. They also cope much better with drought stress. From their cultivation to their use at the brewery, the new varieties consistently deliver more stable yields and bring more certainty to the calculations of brewers and traders. Akoya, an example of one of our innovative breeds, has a high yield stability for the same alpha content and good disease resistance. It is very similar in aroma profile to the older popular German variety Perle, but is more robust in terms of disease and drought resistance, while giving reliably high yields.  

We are also developing new and further developing our existing hop products. The result is innovative products with new aroma profiles for the brewing and beverages sector as well as high-quality products for other industries and a wide range of different applications, such as extracts and oils for cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, food, and animal feed stock.

Key Performance Indicators to criteria 10

Key Performance Indicator G4-FS11
(report also in accordance with GRI SRS): Percentage of assets subject to positive and negative environmental or social screening.(Note: the indicator should also be reported when reporting to GRI SRS)

Liquid assets are not used for financial investment.