A business 'first' took place on Thursday October 19 2000 in Manchester, England, when Durham-based speciality chemical company Thomas Swan became the first in the country to get a brand new award for responsible management.
The award - for excellence in the management of health, safety and environmental performance - was presented by BSI, the global product certification and quality assurance leader.
BSI conducted the review of Thomas Swan on behalf of the Chemical Industries Association as part of the CIA's Responsible Care Initiative.
Launched in March 2000, this scheme aims to highlight chemical companies' commitment to continual improvement in health, safety and environment performance through voluntary Third Party Certification.
It is a mandatory requirement of chemical firms in membership of the CIA to carry out a self-assessment to responsible care by the end of this year.
It is anticipated that companies will progressively move to third-party registration carried out by independent registrars like BSI.
Nick Moy, managing director of BSI Global Quality Services, said: "Thomas Swan has distinguished itself by being the first in the UK to achieve this major accolade."
Dai Hayward, General Manager of Thomas Swan, said: "We are delighted that our company has achieved this major award, which highlights our commitment to being accountable to stakeholders through openness and continual improvement."
Barry Stickings, President of the CIA, said: "I believe strong management systems make an essential contribution to the improvement in health, safety and environmental performance of our industry. I am delighted that, in partnership with the certification bodies, we have developed a means of providing independent assessment of companies' systems. It will be a very demanding test but I hope that in due course all member companies will grasp the opportunity it presents to demonstrate the high standards and sense of responsibility within the chemical industry."
BSI's audit took into account how the company operates, how it manages its impact on the environment and how best to improve on this. The audit also included looking at communication, training, awareness and operational procedures.
CONTACT BSI PRESS OFFICE:
Wilma Tulloch on +44 (0)20 8996 6330 OR
Marc Edney on +44 (0)20 8996 6330