Adidas receives Ethical Consumer's middle rating for its supply chain management.
In March 2015, Human Rights Watch lashed out at European retail giants over "discriminatory labour conditions" in Cambodian factories, most of which had exploited young women. The Human Rights Watch 140-page report was based on interviews with 270 workers from 73 factories, as well as international apparel brand representatives. Of some 200 apparel brands that sourced from Cambodia, Human Rights Watch said it was in contact with companies including Adidas.
According to HRW, the combination of short-term contracts which made it easier to get rid of workers at any moment, poor government labour inspection and enforcement, as well as aggressive tactics against independent unions, made it extremely difficult for workers to assert their rights. According to the Cambodian Ministry of Industry and Handicraft, women made up 90 percent of the country’s more than 700,000 garment workers in 1,200 garment businesses. Pregnancy-related discrimination and sexual harassment at the workplace were the two key concerns for women employees, according to HRW.
Adidas receives Ethical Consumer's middle rating for its environmental reporting.
Adidas has committed to:
- - Environmental Strategy which aimed to reduce relative environmental footprint by 15% by 2015.
- - Set new Green Company targets for 2020, which included a carbon neutrality target for its own operations by 2050.
Overall the company was felt to have a reasonable understanding of its key environmental impacts, it presented more than two quantified future environmental reduction targets and presented environmental performance data. However, the company's environmental report did not appear to be independently audited.
Middle rating for Toxics and Chemicals:
- - Adidas Group has committed to being 90% PFC-free as of 15 June 2014.
- - Greenpeace rates Adidas in 'Evolution Mode' for its Detox Campaign. This means it is 'committed to Detox' and has 'made progress implementing their plans, but their actions need to evolve faster to achieve the 2020 Detox goal'.
Given the fact that leather formed a substantial part of its business, Adidas received a worst rating for animal rights.
In July 2016 Ethical Consumer contacted Viva! to determine whether the organisation's boycott of Adidas was still current. Justin Kerswell, campaigns manager and deputy director, confirmed that the boycott of Adidas over its use of kangaroo leather was still current as, although the company had reduced its use of kangaroo leather, it had not completely stopped.
In June 2016 Ethical Consumer viewed the Adidas family tree on the corporate information website hoovers.com. Adidas had a number of high risk company types based in tax havens. Subsidiaries included:
- - The holding company, adidas Sourcing Limited, based in Hong Kong
- - The business services company, adidas Services Limited, based in Hong Kong
- - The holding company, adidas sport gmbh, based in Switzerland
As the company had more than two high risk company types based in tax havens at the time of writing, Adidas received Ethical Consumer's worst ranking for likely use of tax avoidance strategies.
Excessive directors pay
In June 2016 Ethical Consumer viewed Adidas's Annual Report 2015 which stated that Herbert Hainer (CEO) was paid €11,983,870 in 2015. Ethical Consumer considered remuneration over £1 million to be excessive.