This statement sets out W. Wing Yip & Brothers Trading Group Limited, and all its subsidiary companies, actions to put in place steps that are aimed at ensuring that there is no slavery or human trafficking in our own business or our supply chains. This statement relates to actions and activities which either have been enacted or will be put in place by the end of our financial year ending September 30th 2024.
We are a family owned business in the food sector and operate four sites in the UK selling Chinese and Oriental groceries to restaurants, food manufacturers and the public. We have supply chains both in the UK and worldwide which supply us with a complete range of food products. We also employ nearly 400 people within the Group. We recognise we have a responsibility and are committed to preventing slavery and human trafficking in our corporate activities and in our supply chains. It is a very difficult task to monitor long supply chains across several borders given the cost of so doing and our available resources. However, as a Group we continually strive to improve our diligence in this area.
The last year has continued to see a range of factors which affect the risks of Modern Slavery and the possible exploitation of vulnerable sectors of society, both at home and abroad. These include the continuing conflict arising from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, continued high energy costs, inflation in the UK and other economies which has now resulted in rises in interest rates and political uncertainties around the world , most recently the renewed conflict in the Middle East.
The current economic situation which has resulted from the above clearly increases the risk to vulnerable members of society being exploited. In the first instance The Board has been concerned to ensure the welfare and protection of our own staff to which end financial assistance to help with increased inflationary costs has been provided as well as regular pay reviews undertaken to endeavour to maintain levels of pay.
There is clearly a risk of exploitation in our supply chains in the current situation and to mitigate against this we have been supporting suppliers by engaging with them and
includes paying for orders already in production where possible, ensuring that workers are still able to access grievance procedures, that new or adapted procedures are made available where necessary and that suppliers, and their suppliers, are maintaining rigorous checks during their recruitment processes to ensure that vulnerable workers are not being exploited by third parties seeking to profit from them.
As ever in the context of this everchanging landscape, the Board are continuously concerned there may be new or increased modern slavery risks in our operations and supply chains. New risk assessments will be undertaken as necessary and the prioritisation of previously identified risks will be reconsidered.
As part of our due diligence process, new direct suppliers are risk assessed initially, as well as existing suppliers continuously, against acceptable ethical standards. This is achieved by the use of our Supplier Questionnaire, direct contact with them and, where possible, visits to their premises. We endeavor to take the opportunity to visit suppliers and take advantage of these whenever they arise. Whereas this has been extremely difficult in recent years during the COVID Pandemic, the current year has seen a return to supplier visits abroad which offers the opportunity to see their production facilities and meet their staff properly. Our current and new suppliers must adhere to the highest standards of ethics and they will be required (via our Supplier Questionnaire) to issue us with their own statement (if applicable) or confirm they are taking steps to comply with our statement. This includes UK suppliers and all suppliers outside of the UK.
Our employees are made aware of the risks arising with respect to modern slavery and human trafficking and are encouraged to report all instances and suspicions, as soon as they become aware of them.
We are pleased to report to date no evidence of modern slavery nor human trafficking has been detected.
Going forwards, it is the commitment of both the company, and all its subsidiary companies, to neither support nor deal with any business knowingly involved in slavery or human trafficking.
This statement was approved by W. Wing Yip & Brothers Trading Group Limited Board of Directors on 8 November 2023 who will review and update it annually, following the end of the financial year on 30 September. It has also been approved by the Boards of Directors of W. Wing Yip PLC, W. Wing Yip (London) Limited and W. Wing Yip (Manchester) Limited, WWYC (Holdings) Limited and WWYC Limited.
B J Yip, Managing Director
8th November 2023
A PDF version can be downloaded here.