President of Produits Neptune
THIS QUEBEC COMPANY SPECIALIZES IN MANUFACTURING A COMPLETE LINE OF BATHROOM PRODUCTS THAT SETS ITSELF APART THANKS TO ITS INNOVATIVE CHARACTER AND GREAT QUALITY. FOR A LONG TIME, PRODUITS NEPTUNE HAS SHOWCASED THEIR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT TENDENCIES, AND THEY ARE THE VERY FIRST COMPANY IN NORTH AMERICA TO HAVE GOTTEN THE ECORESPONSIBLETM CERTIFICATION. LET US ALSO HIGHLIGHT THAT MR. ROCHETTE RECEIVED THE COVETED GREEN CEO PRIZE in 2014, IN THE MEDIUM-SIZED BUSINESS CATEGORY.
“We have always been concerned with sustainable development; you might say that it is a part of the Neptune DNA. We have consistently made sure to stay close to our clientele and employees, and to reduce our environmental footprint as much as possible. However, our steps in obtaining our EcoresponsibleTM Certification led us to examine our processes even more carefully and draw up a concrete action plan that allowed us to show equally concrete results.”
WHAT TYPE OF RESULTS HAVE YOU GOTTEN?
In terms of human resources, we reduced our accident rate by 83% over a few years. This reduction has had a direct impact on our insurance premiums, which went from $280k a year to about $10k. This is clearly a very enticing result. We also make sure to provide our employees with a safe and healthy work environment. For example, we improved air quality and our processes to the point where our employees no longer need to wear masks to protect themselves from fumes. In our climate where the workforce is growing scarcer, we have a turnover rate of less than 1%, which earned us a PlastiCompétences prize in 2014. On the environmental front, we are 50% below the required standard for toxic gas emissions. We introduced equipment and processes that allow us to completely recycle the water we use during testing. Not a single glass of water is wasted. We also invested in our ventilation systems and in the automation of certain processes. We selected suppliers with environmental concerns, for example our packaging cardboard is from Cascades and is 80% recyclable, our acrylic scraps are sent to a supplier that recycles them, etc.
PRODUITS NEPTUNE IS ALREADY A LEADER IN ITS INDUSTRY, NOTABLY THROUGH ITS SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT ACTIONS – WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE FUTUR?
There is no question that sustainable development will have to be an integral part of corporate governance, since humanity’s well-being is at stake. On the business front, I think we must ensure that our sustainable development practices offer everyone in the manufacturing sector product differentiation and a competitive advantage. Our efforts are essential, but until now, they have yet to take us to the heart of the consumer’s purchasing process. My greatest hope is for a huge promotional campaign to be rolled out (like the ones we saw for road safety, tobacco, nutrition, etc.) to encourage consumers as a whole to learn about the origins of the products they purchase and the manufacturers’ sustainable development practices. Price should not be the sole purchase criteria. Sustainable development requires us to promote its benefits for the environment, society, job creation, local economic revitalization, etc. In my opinion, such a campaign would lead to great progress. In the meantime, each business must prepare itself to take its place in a greener economy.