Production in a social responsible manner - selected products

  • Food and beverage products
  • Human Rights


Requirements and Criteria Type: 
  • Technical Specification (Requirement Specifications)

Main Objective: 

The main purpose is to ensure that the products procured shall be produced under working conditions that safeguard basic human rights for the workers.

Requirement Specification: 

Suppliers shall offer products that are produced in a socially responsible manner.  The products to which this applies are specified by the contracting authority and displayed in the product list (see Appendix X) [Specify in the appendix whixh products, for instance coffee, cocoa, tea and  fruit the requirement apply to].

The fact that the products are produced in a socially responsible manner means that they are produced under working conditions that comply with the following: 

  1. The ILO core conventions on forced labour, child labour, discrimination, freedom to join trade unions and collective bargaining (nos. 29, 87, 98, 100, 105, 111, 138 and 182)
  2. National legislation in the country of production. Particularly relevant matters that should be pointed out are 1) wage and working time rules; 2) health, safety and the environment; 3) regular employment, including employment contracts; as well as 4) statutory insurance and social schemes.

Which products that are produced in a socially responsible manner must be clearly stated in the electronic ordering system.

Documentation of the Requirement Specification: 

Documentation that the products are produced in a socially responsible manner may be that they are certified in accordance with a certification scheme for production in a socially responsible manner, such as  Fairtrade, UTZ, and/or the Rainforest Alliance, or any other relevant documentation.

Suppliers shall disclose in the product list how the requirement is met for selected products, by specification of the labelling scheme or otherwise.


When using the EHF directory, socially responsible products must be labeled according to the format

When using the supplier's ordering system, the supplier must state how the socially responsible products should be highlighted in the system

Information about the Requirement Specification: 

The requirement is relevant to use for the procurement of products, such as coffee, tea, cocoa and fruit. It must be clearly specified to which products the requirement shall apply. Cocoa, coffee, tea and fruit are products that entail a risk of human rights violations in the supply chain, and they are products that are certified in accordance with different standards. Which products are certified in accordance with the various certification schemes will of course vary. For example, Fairtrade, UTZ and the Rainforest Alliance all have certified coffee, tea and cocoa. Both the Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade certify various types of fruit, but not necessarily the same fruits. What documentation is relevant and which labelling schemes are stated must therefore be adapted based on what is to be procured and the products to which the requirement applies. 

When choosing which products in the agreed product range such a requirement applies to, you should check which products entail a risk of human rights violations that are also likely to be users of one or more labelling schemes. This can be identified in the market dialogue, and you can check the websites of the various labelling schemes.

When you know that there is a risk of human rights violations, and that labelled products are available in the markets, we recommend selecting the products that represent a high share of the procurement volume, either in value or percentage terms.  For example: If bananas represent a large percentage of the fruit procurement, while melons only represent a small percentage, then it may be more appropriate to stipulate this requirement for bananas than melons. Bananas are also certified by both Fairtrade and the Rainforest Alliance.




Related links: 

Published: 11. Mar 2019, Last modified: 08. Jun 2020