Chapters
Annual Report 2019

2.4 Manufacturing and dedicated production lines

An effective, efficient and safe Product Value Chain that delivers quality products to our customers quickly would not be possible without our chain of 17 Regional Fulfilment Hubs (RFH).

These highly-automated centers are strategically located across the countries where we are present and put the finishing touches on every pair of frames.

As part of our strategy to transform our TechCenters and warehouses into RFHs, we now refer to all manufacturing facilities as RFHs. Following our strategy to centralize more of our production volume in these RFHs, we better align with our long-term value creation objectives. In this way, we also support global social and environmental goals by working at production sites that are centrally regulated for worker safety and environmental protection.

Here are some RFH benefits:

  • Reduced CO2 emissions per processed spectacle
  • Increased water and energy efficiency with highly-sophisticated equipment
  • Increased manufacturing precision and reduced material scrap, which lowers waste volumes per spectacle
  • Increased activity control by dedicated staff
  • Reduced occupied space significantly to save supply and management resources

More than 70% of the total spectacles we sell are processed in RFHs, and the volume we processed centrally increased by 8% to almost 13 million. These increases were in line with our retail network growth, centralization planning and 2025 target for RFHs to process at least 85% of our spectacles. We are working towards this integration to support a true omnichannel experience for our customers in the future.

Continuous RFH improvements

We continue to raise our standards for Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) topics in our RFHs. That’s why we partnered with Ramboll, a leading engineering company, to support our compliance journey with independent audits to resolve any issues. We employ dedicated environment management system personnel to keep track of this, and educate our RFH employees on EHS topics. We also established plans to audit RFHs for EHS compliance and take corrective actions to maintain ongoing improvements.

Responsible resource use in our RFHs

We track the environmental impact of our manufacturing processes and the materials we use — including those for frames, lenses and packaging, as well as water usage, waste streams, gas and electricity.

We are also aware of the environmental impact of the materials we use to make our spectacles. This includes acetate (a plastic blend of cotton), metals, plastic for lenses, and plastic and cardboard packaging. Currently, we do not have accurate data available to include this information in our carbon footprint and related targets.

However, our RFHs are working to improve:

  • Energy efficiency
  • Efficient heating and cooling systems
  • Electricity use reduction
  • Water efficiency
  • Waste reduction

CSR KPI monitoring in RFHs is now included on a monthly basis thanks to centralized reporting dashboards.

RFH water efficiency

Last year, we improved our water efficiency by 8% compared to 2018. We now use fewer than two liters of water for cutting, edging and fitting a pair of lenses into a frame. We make about 70% of all our spectacles with about 6% of our total water usage (Total RFH water usage: 23,381 m3; Total store water usage: 359,790 m3).

We also surpassed our 2025 target to reduce water consumption per spectacle to 1.87 liters and reduced it to 1.82 liters. This is more than a 15% reduction compared to the 2015 base year.

Recycled waste streams in RFHs (tons)

2019

2018

Plastic packaging

156

111

Paper and cardboard

368

216

Production waste

491

516

Total

1,015

843

RFH waste management

We work to improve our process efficiency while producing as little waste as possible. In general, our RFH waste management systems are more efficient and sustainable than our local stores thanks to centralized processes and procedures. We track waste streams in our RFHs, including plastic packaging waste, paper and cardboard, residual waste from cutting and edging lenses, and unused products.

In 2019, we continued to gain insights into RFHs’ waste management practices, and we are improving our waste separation and recycling processes. Our RFHs recycled 20% more waste in 2019 than in 2018. The total waste streams we offered for recycling amount to 1,015 tons. This is partly due to the fact that our RFHs processed 8% more spectacles, and partly because we have become better at separating and recycling more plastic, paper and cardboard. The table above shows the split per waste stream for recycling in tons.

Total environmental pressure for GrandVision RFH portfolio

2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

Total energy consumption (GJ)

41,169

43,728

42,393

45,151

49,731

Total CO2 emissions (Ktons)

3.49

2.98

2.97

3.13

3.41

Total water consumption (1,000m2)

20.0

23.2

22.8

22.9

23.3

Off cuts offered for recycling (tons)

438

596

534

843

1,015

Total environmental pressure in RFHs per spectacle

2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

2025 target

Energy efficiency (MJ per spectacle processed)

4.6

4.2

4.0

3.9

3.9

-

CO2 efficiency (grams of CO2 per spectacle processed)

391

284

282

271

267

205

Water efficiency (liters of water per spectacle processed)

2.24

2.21

2.16

1.98

1.82

1.87

With our RFHs' centralized cutting, edging and fitting facilities, we reduce the environmental footprint of our production activities through efficiencies in energy, water and waste management.

The above tables illustrate the environmental performance of our RFH portfolio, as well as per frame processed. About 98% of all RFH processes are included within the environmental pressure we measured. Please note: we recalculated the 2018 data with updated conversion factors.

Compared to 2018, the environmental pressure of our production processes has increased. This is due to further centralizing our production processes across GrandVision, as we processed 8% more frames at RFHs in 2019 versus 2018.

While our absolute environmental pressure increased, we continue to reduce our CO2 efficiency rate per spectacle to meet our 2025 target of 205 grams. In 2019, we reduced this rate by 1% to 267 grams of CO2 per processed spectacle.

Our Finnish/Estonian RFH 's sustainable practices

Our RFH that serves our business in Finland and Estonia recently incorporated more sustainable practices into its daily processes and procedures. These include:

  • Transporting products from production facilities to stores in reusable boxes
  • Using edging machines that cut lenses without water
  • Converting heat from compressors into warehouse heating during winter
  • Equipping machines that use water with water recycling systems
  • Partnering with a recycling company to create construction materials from lens cutting waste