UPM Supplier and Third Party Code – foundation for conducting business responsibly

4 April 2017

Higher standards mean lower risks. This is why we make sure that our suppliers and third parties live up to our exacting standards defined by UPM Code of Conduct.

UPM renewed its supplier code in autumn 2016. The new code is called UPM Supplier and Third Party Code and it determines the minimum level of performance that we require from everyone working with and for UPM. No compromises, no exceptions.

We want to make sure that any kind of environmental, social and economic risk is minimized. Moreover, we want to guarantee that all our operations are safe, and that all raw materials we use come from legal, responsibly acting sources and make safe end products. Compliance of all these was driving the renewal of our code of conduct for suppliers and third party intermediaries.

“Our leading principle is that we do not compromise our standards of integrity under any circumstances, and we expect the same approach from our suppliers and third party intermediaries. UPM’s compliance with laws and regulations – in particular, competition and anti-corruption laws – sets a solid foundation for our commitment to being a trustworthy business partner,” says Jussi Pesonen, President & CEO.

Suppliers are expected to share the message

UPM works with over 30,000 suppliers around the world. Looking at UPM’s sourcing spend, 80 percent comes from suppliers who are committed to UPM’s Supplier Code. This target was reached in 2016.

“The question is: how do we proceed from here? Keeping and exceeding that level demands continuous, consistent attention and practical work. The new UPM Supplier and Third Party Code is a tool that helps us to increase the understanding of responsible business around the world,” says Petri Heinonen, Manager, Supply Chains.

UPM’s various intermediaries like agents, joint venture partners, local partners and distributors must pay particular attention to compliance with all applicable laws.

“UPM has a zero-tolerance for corruption and bribery in all forms. Misconduct by a third party acting on our behalf could expose UPM to liability under various anti-corruption regimes. Therefore, we must perform appropriate due diligence on such third parties and take action to make UPM’s requirements and message known to them. We expect our suppliers and third parties to comply with all applicable anti-money laundering laws, trade sanctions regimes and competition laws. We also expect them to respect human rights, minimize any negative environmental impact and share this message further in their supply chains,” says Markus Skrabb, Chief Compliance Officer.

“Of course, it is extremely challenging to control the compliance of laws and ethical practices of over 30,000 suppliers, so a comprehensive risk assessment and targeted measures based on the assessment are still needed”, Markus Skrabb continues.

At the heart of the Biofore promise

Ethical business practices and high integrity have gained further importance during the past years.

“This is a good thing to UPM, since we have always been a frontrunner in the industry when it comes to responsibility and standards of integrity,” says Ilkka Nurmi, Senior Vice President, Sourcing.

The renewed Code only sets the minimum requirements for UPM’s suppliers and third parties. The overall requirement portfolio also includes their strategic fit with UPM, business plans, overall management system, and specific capabilities like product development, quality management and after sales practices, to name a few.

“Our rules are strict because we have made a brand promise to our customers. We act in a responsible manner and with high integrity, and UPM Supplier and Third Party Code is at the heart of that promise,” Ilkka Nurmi says.


A Practical Guide concerning UPM Supplier and Third Party Code explains our requirements in more detail through examples and good practices.

Read the Practical Guide online here


UPM Supplier and Third Party Code

This article series discusses the renewed UPM Supplier and Third Party Code which defines the minimum level of performance that UPM requires from all of its suppliers and third-party intermediaries concerning responsible business, standards of integrity, ethical practices, and compliance with laws and regulations around the world.


Saara Pakarinen

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