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Responsible Sourcing

At Pfizer, responsible supply chain management is core to how we do business.

We operate within a framework of principles aligned with ethical, social, and environmental responsibilities to help ensure sustainability of our business and the communities in which we operate. We work through organizations such as the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Initiative to ensure alignment.

Accordingly, Pfizer aims to partner with external suppliers that are committed to operating their businesses in a responsible and ethical manner, respecting the rights of the individuals whom they employ, and helping protect the environment.

Pfizer strongly encourages our supply partners to support our Supplier Conduct Principles or adopt their own codes which include expectations similar to ours. We expect our suppliers to:

  • Operate in full compliance with all applicable laws, rules and regulations.
  • Conduct their business in an ethical manner, acting with integrity.
  • Commit to upholding the human rights of workers and treating them with dignity and respect.
  • Provide a safe and healthy work environment, including any company-provided living quarters.
  • Operate in an environmentally responsible and efficient manner to minimize adverse impacts on the environment, as part of our Environmental Sustainability program.
  • Facilitate continuous improvement and compliance with the expectations of these principles by using management systems.
  • Pfizer assesses the performance and adherence to the Supplier Conduct Principles by conducting routine evaluations and onsite assessments. Failure to comply, or failure to correct non-complying situations are grounds for business relationship termination.
  • Download Pfizer's Supplier Conduct Position Statement (PDF)
  • Download Pfizer's Supplier Conduct Principles (PDF)

A network of external suppliers is essential to enable manufacture of medicines and vaccines that deliver breakthroughs that change patients lives. Pfizer’s supply chain supports the research, development and manufacturing process by providing flexibility and access to technologies necessary to meet our commitment to patients We are committed to using suppliers that demonstrate strong performance in Environment, Health, and Safety (EHS) management.

We seek to ensure that our manufacturing and research & development suppliers demonstrate strong performance in the management of EHS risks. We assess the EHS performance of our suppliers by performing onsite evaluations. The results of these assessments are factored into the supplier selection process. Where improvement is needed, we help suppliers to reduce risk with targeted training and coaching, and we require action plans that call for timely upgrades of facilities and management systems.

In particular, we aim to incorporate EHS, including environmental sustainability, criteria when purchasing goods and services and reduce potential risks of business interruption to our global supply chain. 

Notable actions we undertake in supplier reviews include:

  • Conducting EHS reviews of our direct materials suppliers on a periodic basis which is typically every 5 years

  • Performing onsite evaluations to assess EHS performance

  • Avoiding new relationships with suppliers that present excessive risk

  • Developing and implementing improvement plans for suppliers that present elevated but manageable risks and who are amenable to implementing timely corrective actions

  • Providing tailored training to current suppliers that demonstrated elevated risk

  • Conducting subsequent reviews following closure of improvement plans

Pfizer actively supports collaborative industry efforts to improve performance in supply chain EHS management. These include efforts with our suppliers and the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Initiative (PSCI), of which Pfizer was a founding member.

Through these relationships and others, we look for opportunities to help suppliers achieve improved EHS performance.

In particular we aim to contribute to a more sustainable global supply chain by establishing the expectation that our suppliers follow the PSCI's Pharmaceutical Industry Principles for Responsible Supply Chain Management, and our Supplier Conduct Principles, and by building EHS capacity in our supply chain, for example by providing EHS content for incorporation into PSCI supplier training events.

In 2015, we established our first ambitious goals aimed at influencing our key suppliers to establish robust environmental sustainability programs with GHG, waste and water reduction targets. Pfizer was recognized as a CDP Supplier Engagement Leader in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Although we fell short of meeting our 2020 targets, we learned from the experience and have established a firm foundation on which to continue to build through an ambitious second-generation supply chain goal to catalyze suppliers to establish science-based targets by 2025. 

Visit our climate action page to learn more.