The Ten Pillars of
CSR at Ragus
Our commitment to corporate social responsibility (CSR) underpins the Ragus brand, qualifying us to supply the most demanding customers in the industries we serve.
Ragus’ Ten Pillars of CSR
Ragus is a leading supplier in the production of brown sugars, molasses, syrups and treacles for many of the best known global food, drink and pharmaceutical brands. Our commitment to corporate social responsibility (CSR) underpins the Ragus brand, qualifying us to supply the most demanding customers in the industries we serve.
CSR is embedded in everything we do: health and safety, quality, our talent management strategy and employee behaviours, sustainability, our supply chain management and customer service, the community around us, our risk management strategy, zero tolerance of bribery and corruption, and respect for human rights.
UK’s leading industrial sugar supplier
Ragus is the UK’s leading independent importer and manufacturer of sugar products, including pure sugars and pure syrups, occupying a unique position in the European sugar market, and, indeed, in history.
We have been sourcing and manufacturing natural sugars for over 90 years. This heritage of responsible sourcing and traceability, combined with our modern custom-built UK factory in Slough near London, has led us to develop and implement our Ten Pillars of CSR.
What are the ten pillars?
The Ragus Ten Pillars of CSR include mandatory statutory requirements, which we exceed in every category. To further demonstrate our commitment to CSR practices, we are evaluating new reporting frameworks provided by ISO 26000 and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).
1. Health and safety
ISO 18001 with full statutory compliance. We provide additional training for employees, and all managers and team leaders are Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) qualified, leading by example while raising awareness and reinforcing the importance of health and safety within the company.
ISO 9001:2008, multiple food and sugar industry certifications and accreditations:
United Nations (UN) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Sugarmark
Organic Food Federation (OFF)
Bee Farmers Association
Our modern custom-built factory features advanced filtration and detection equipment that safeguards products during the production process, and our unrelenting focus is on assuring the safety of all the products entering and leaving the factory.
Our workforce is our most valuable asset. To maintain and grow the value of our employees, we invest in learning and development, alongside promoting other values such as gender equality. This investment includes vocational training, refresher courses and other support as needed. Production employees are multi-skilled, enabling them to work in more than one area. Human rights, anti-slavery and whistleblowing policies are in place. SEDEX Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) audits – which are a customer driven requirement – demonstrate our commitment to the ethical treatment of our employees and those of our suppliers and partners.
In addition to ISO 14001, our factory was designed and built with sustainability and resource optimisation incorporated, resulting in significant resource savings, when compared with the previous site, since it began operation in 2012.
Waste streams are monitored constantly and measures are taken to ensure as little waste as possible goes to landfill. Since March 2017:
Waste recycled is trending upwards
Waste to landfill is trending downwards.
Where possible, we avoid single-use plastic in favour of externally asset-managed reusable containers that go on to be used in other industries with different specification requirements. All the buckets into which we decant our syrup products are made from polypropylene, which is a widely recyclable plastic.
Our commercial laundry is managed by an external specialist service provider, capable of efficient water and chemical efficiency, complying with BRC and HACCP industry standards, and sharing our sustainability goals.
Washing down of equipment is managed with very few chemicals. The change to intermediate bulk containers (IBCs), which are collected, refurbished and sent to be reused in other industries by the supplier, has further reduced our direct usage of chemicals for cleaning purposes. One tonne bags account for the largest percentage of factory waste, and these are recycled along with all factory waste except the pads from the filters which go to landfill as diatomaceous earth.
Airborne sugar dust is extracted and reused, preventing it from entering the environment.
We continue to monitor our waste and consumption streams to identify areas for future improvement.
Customers’ needs are addressed through formal and informal consultations, surveys and audits, which enable their concerns to be managed quickly and effectively, and questions answered. We completed customer and third-party audits, enabling us to supply many of the most demanding food and beverage producers, bakers, brewers and healthcare and pharmaceutical companies in the world.
6. Supply chain
Alongside the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) and SEDEX accreditations, we regularly visit our suppliers, including supplier brokers, refineries, mills and plantations, to ensure that they all share the same responsibility values and high standards.
Promoting participation in certain food standard accreditation schemes and raising the profile of the new policies concerning human rights, modern slavery and bribery, highlights our commitment to ethical sourcing.
With food origin so important to consumers, we use technology to follow all our sugar, from the mill or refinery through the delivery chain to our factory and onwards, into every sugar, syrup or special sugar formulation that we manufacture. This complete audit trail allows our customers to trace their Ragus sugar ingredients from field to final formulation.
We are always aware of the needs of supporting local employment and community safety. In a wider context, our new human rights and anti-modern slavery policies benefit workers in stakeholder companies overseas, as the company works to support positive operational practices among them.
8. Risk management
Underpinning the Ragus business and CSR strategies is its risk management strategy, which includes strong internal corporate governance and compliance with external requirements, such as the Bribery Act 2010, the Modern Slavery Act 2015, and UN and ILO standards.
9. Anti-corruption and bribery
We have always been committed to the highest standards of ethical conduct and integrity in all business activities in the UK and overseas, thus compliance was already in place with the requirements of the Bribery Act 2010 when it was introduced. Our policy states that any fraud, misconduct or wrongdoing by workers, officers or stakeholders of the company is reported and dealt with properly. To support this and other policies, we introduced a proactive whistleblowing policy to ensure the security of any individual reporting inappropriate behaviours or wrongdoing of any kind.
10. Human rights and anti-modern slavery
Our Human Rights Policy communicates to stakeholders and the wider community our values and our commitment to uphold human rights by promoting them. We have established a zero-tolerance position towards bullying, discrimination, and violations of anti-human trafficking and anti-modern slavery laws, through the creation of new, definitive policies concerning human rights, bribery, modern slavery and whistleblowing.
Contact us to learn more about our CSR and how it underpins the production of brown sugars, molasses, syrups and treacles for food, drink and pharmaceutical brands.