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ASI News - February 2016

Developing Chain of Custody for the aluminium value chain

Chain of custody, ethical and responsible sourcing, traceability, supply chain due diligence and provenance claims are among the various terms used for approaches to enhancing sustainability through markets. In particular, they refer to efforts to manage supply chains to encourage certain objectives, such as sustainable development, fair trade, agreed production standards, and management of product lifecycles.

ASI's certification program will include a Chain of Custody Standard designed to link responsible production with responsible sourcing and procurement, thus leveraging the ASI Performance Standard. In general terms, Chain of Custody standards set requirements for systems to manage the custody of material with certification characteristics, as it passes through the supply chain from production to end-users.

Chain of custody standards are common in many certification programs, and in metals supply chains are seen to be able to provide one or more of the following:
  • Drivers to improve mining, processing and material stewardship practices
  • Drivers to increase proportion of recycled materials
  • Information for end-user and consumer decisions on responsible purchasing
  • Assurance to B2B customers to support supply chain due diligence.
There is a wide range of chain of custody systems in operation across various industry sectors and product types.  They can be grouped into four main models:
  • Track and trace: traces product from source (producer, region or country), physically segregating and tracking it through supply chains. Example: Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) fish.
  • Bulk commodity:  physically segregates certified from non-certified product to prevent mixing, but does not trace back to product origin. Example: Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) CoC Standard for gold.
  • Mass balance: each company keeps track of the amount of certified product it buys and sells. While there is no physical segregation, there is administrative segregation. Example:  Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) credit system for mixed sources of paper.
  • Book and claim:  the trade in physical products is completely decoupled from the trade in certificates. Usually a central issuing body is responsible for issuing and redeeming traded certificates. Example: Renewable energy credits.
All four models are designed to drive improved production practices, though each model has different management approaches and potential impacts on markets and supply chain relationships. An important part of credibility is ensuring transparency and clarity in certification claims, so as to avoid confusion or deception. 

ASI will be taking a mass balance approach in the design of its Chain of Custody Standard.  This takes account of the complex nature of the global aluminium value chain, the diversity of downstream processes and uses of aluminium, and the fact that aluminium is usually only one component in multi-material products.

The goals for the ASI Chain of Custody Standard are that it be:
  • Robust: can address a wide variety of systems, technologies and claims
  • Compliant with anti-trust laws: create no restraint on competition
  • Practical and reasonable: particularly in its cost of implementation
  • Based on clear, transparent and auditable standards and assurance
  • A sound basis for credible and verifiable claims.
Further drafting and consultation on the ASI Chain of Custody Standard is set to take place during 2016-17. We warmly welcome stakeholder interest in this process!

Contact: Dr Fiona Solomon, ASI Executive Director, fiona@aluminium-stewardship.org 

Aluminium Association of Canada joins ASI

ASI is delighted to announce that the Aluminium Association of Canada has joined as an Associations member.

The Aluminium Association of Canada (AAC) is a non-profit organisation representing the Canadian primary aluminium industry towards the population, end-users, public authorities and key environmental and economic stakeholders.  The AAC strives to ensure that the Canadian primary aluminium industry is considered a world-class model of sustainable prosperity.

"Joining ASI is a timely logical step for the Aluminium Association of Canada," says Jean Simard, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Having invested ourselves in documenting our past environmental and economic  performance in order to measure and improve our overall contribution to sustainability, we now move on to our next frontier; establishing our social footprint. We share ASI’S vision for aluminium’s contribution to sustainability, as well as its core values of stakeholder engagement and material stewardship. ASI’s standard setting initiative is the best forward looking way to carve our place in a sustainable world."

For more information visit aluminium.ca


ASI Members Jaguar Land Rover and Novelis lead circular economy project

In the REALCAR closed loop value chain project, collaboration between Jaguar Land Rover, Novelis, Innovate UK and partners explored the creation of new materials and production systems to introduce closed-loop aluminium into Jaguar Land Rover cars.

Jaguar Land Rover uses aluminium in its vehicles' bodies to reduce weight and tailpipe emissions and improve fuel consumption. However, with aluminium more energy-intensive to produce, the manufacturer needed a new method to reduce costs and environmental impact during production. Its material supplier Novelis also had a long-standing commitment to increasing its use of recycled materials year-on-year and required a like-minded customer with a similar appetite for improving sustainability performance. 

While the case study focuses on the REALCAR project, its findings are relevant to the creation and transformation of all value chains and other collaborative circular economy and material stewardship projects. 

The authors concluded that the key learning points from the project were:
  • Material suitability and innovation: There must be high confidence about the across-the-board suitability of the material selected for a closed loop.
  • Establishing a value chain network: Traditional transactional supply chain thinking must be replaced by a value chain approach in which partners work in true collaboration to achieve goals for all parties. It is essential that a thorough communications and engagement plan for each stakeholder is in place.
  • Progressive leadership:  Unwavering support and advocacy at a senior level provides confidence and momentum – and a forum to help remove roadblocks.
Download the Case Study


The Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) will hold its inaugural Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Tuesday April 26, 2016 at the Audi Forum, Ingolstadt, Germany.  

Register now to secure your place!

This free event is open to industry, civil society and all interested organisations.  It will provide the opportunity to network with a wide range of stakeholders in the aluminium value chain, and connect with ASI's work to develop sustainability standards for the sector. 

The day's agenda will be:

9-11am          Formal AGM proceedings (ASI members only)
11-11.30am   Welcome networking with tea and coffee 
11.30-1pm     Keynotes, ASI overview on progress and plans
1-2pm            Lunch
2-3pm            Audi factory tours, hosted in English, German and French
3-3.30pm       Tea and coffee break / Briefing for interested auditors
3.30-5pm       Session on Chain of Custody

ASI is delighted to be hosting two valued keynote speakers: Karin Kreider, Executive Director of the ISEAL Alliance, and Andrea Dreifke-Pieper, Director Strategic Corporate Partnerships, WWF Deutschland.  ASI Executive Director, Fiona Solomon, will also present on ASI's progress and plans, as well as lead a session discussing Chain of Custody.

Registrations are now open at:

Questions?  Please contact info@aluminium-stewardship.org


AluSolutions 2016, the only free exhibition and conference addressing sustainability challenges in aluminium production and processing, will present speakers from around the world to discuss growing sustainability across the industry, recycling targets, case studies, technological innovations and a look at what the future might hold.

ASI will present a panel of speakers discussing its work and that of its members on May 11.  Speakers include Erik Fossum, Norsk Hydro, Ammar Alul, Schüco, Fiona Solomon, ASI, and Rio Tinto.
Date of event: 10-11 May 2016
Venue: Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, UAE
Website: www.alusolutions.com
Registration: This event is free to attend
For more information on attending or conference and exhibition opportunities, please contact:
E: nadinefirth@quartzltd.com
T: +44 (0) 1737 855 115


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