Progress at a Glance

Dear reader,

To keep our stakeholders informed about our developments and accomplishments, we have decided to publish a sustainability update covering the most important events and selected highlights of 2023. For those who would like to dig deeper, we refer to our in-depth sustainability report from the previous year.

In 2023, a new member was welcomed into our Group with the acquisition of Devro, one of the world's leading suppliers of collagen-based casings for food. Devro's product range not only complements SARIA's existing product portfolio but also strengthen the growth and market positions for both sides. In addition, the two companies also share clear cultural values, as sustainability is at the heart of both.

However, we grew not only in terms of the number of Group members, but also with regard to the maturity of our group-wide sustainability management. Our employees’ growing awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of sustainability and the potential of collaboration led to increasing networking activity within our Group as well as between our organizational units and divisions – resulting in a transfer of ideas and best practices which considerably enhanced our sustainability performance. This progress has also been recognized by EcoVadis, which ranked us among the top 7% of all companies it assessed.

This spirit of sustainability thrives on fertile ground in our organization with a business model deeply rooted in the circular economy. We are dedicated to making sure nothing goes to waste. By converting products of animal origin and other organic substances into valuable inputs for new purposes, we keep precious materials in the cycle and giving them a second life.

We do so because we believe that, as a family-owned business, we have the responsibility to leave behind a viable planet and intact natural resources for future generations. This aim cannot be achieved without resilience in challenging times. Being flexible in our means, but firm in our goals and values guides our journey every day. This is why our sustainability management takes equal account of social and governance aspects as well as environmental issues.

Our employees play a vital role in our journey. They continuously innovate, develop and find solutions to deliver on our commitment to work together towards a sustainable world and healthier living.

In that spirit, we hope you enjoy reading this update and look forward to an inspiring dialog

SARIA Unterschriften

Sustainability at SARIA

At SARIA, we have built a strong sustainability management across our Group by building networks and establishing clear responsibilities, structures and processes. We track our progress to critically evaluate our ESG performance, which we describe in our facts & figures at a glance. By providing them, we create transparency for our stakeholders and give an insight into what we have done, what we have accomplished and where we still have some way ahead of us. This journey will be guided by group-wide coordination and collaboration, because we want to ensure governance in what we do and leverage synergies. We are convinced that sharing knowledge and learning from each other will carry us a long way – individually and as a group.

Sustainability at Group Level

We are convinced that living sustainability is an interdisciplinary team effort, which is why we take an integrated cross-border approach and deeply engrain sustainability in our Group Functions: When national regulation and industry or customer requirements permit, we see value in establishing group-wide standards and common policies for all our business activities, particularly in governance-related issues such as compliance, information security and data protection, or human rights issues and supply chain responsibility. We also consider an inclusive approach to be useful when it comes to people responsibility as well as risk management and acquisition processes.

Sustainability in our Divisions

At SARIA, we are firmly committed to the circular economy, which forms the essence of our business model. We collect and process products of animal origin and other organic substances, converting them into valuable input materials for new purposes. Effectively reusing what otherwise would be considered “waste” is possible because of the seamless integration of the different divisions and their respective business units within our Group. We have created interconnected value chains to ensure everything flows in a cycle. This collaborative approach allows us to utilize synergies and provide our customers with high quality products and services. At the same time, closing the loop helps conserve natural resources and contributes to sustainable development – every day.

A Self-Reflective Look Ahead

The so-called “VUCA” world (Volatility; Uncertainty; Complexity; Ambiguity) will continue to shape our business environment in the near future and beyond. Considering the fact that there are no signs of a return to political or economic stability, volatility and uncertainty are set to increase. Unclear conditions and a rapid pace of change will lead to growing complexity in analysis and decision making. Finally, many of the developments we see will be ambiguous in nature, such as climate change simultaneously creating threats as well as opportunities.

At SARIA, we pride ourselves on translating these ambiguities and threats into opportunities. We will use our innovative strength to drive technological advancement and continuous improvement in our upstream and downstream operations – also because we believe that technological progress is an essential ingredient in sustainable development.

However, being bold and enterprising does not imply taking unnecessary risks. It is important to us that we are well prepared for new developments in advance and that we maintain a long-term perspective. This is why we are already taking the necessary organizational steps to meet the extensive requirements of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) – the EU’s ambitious ESG disclosure initiative. Beginning in 2025, it will require corporations to report a large variety of qualitative and quantitative data on environmental, social and governance aspects.

It is in our spirit to see such regulatory challenges not as a burden, but also as an opportunity to investigate our processes, measure our performance and find ways to further professionalize our operations. Concrete figures give us a good basis on which to enhance the strategic and operational control of our business.

In some areas, we still need to further improve standardized data across our Group to allow consistent site-based assessments on the one hand and uniform reporting on the other. This requires an optimization of the underlying processes and an intensification of cooperation across the different business areas within our Group , plus the exploitation of additional synergies in our internal network.

The road ahead will be neither short nor straight. This journey requires an entrepreneurial spirit, paired with a hands-on mentality that enable us to unite inventiveness and action. And with over 50 years of experience, we have had plenty of time to build and refine these strengths and make them resilient. In the course of our mutual entrepreneurial history, we have constantly nurtured and developed the relationships with our employees and business partners. That is because we know we can only work successfully if we all strive together towards a sustainable world and healthier living.