Colombo, March 6, 2017: Dipped Products PLC, Hayleys Group’s internationally renowned glove manufacturer in Sri Lanka, emerged as winners of the Ian Dias Abeysinghe Memorial CSR/Sustainability award at the recently concluded Japan Sri Lanka Technical & Cultural Association (JASTECA) Awards 2016.
The Gold award was presented to DPL in recognition of the Company’s groundbreaking efforts to develop the world’s first ethical rubber gloves manufactured using ‘Fair Trade’ principles that ensure that the rubber is sustainably and ethically sourced from smallholder farmers. This was initiated in 2007 in the Moneragala district.
The FirstLight program has been designed to enable smallholder rubber farmers to be directly integrated into the field latex supply chain of DPL manufacturing operations. DPL has always been mindful that one of its primary responsibilities is to take good care of the rubber farmers who form the first link in the value chain of latex glove manufacturing. DPL has crafted the FirstLight programme as its core CSR/sustainability project keeping this primary responsibility in mind.
The company adopts a multi-pronged strategy that ensures a transparent pricing scheme based on Colombo RSS1 auction prices, in order to ensure a fair price for field latex while also providing education and practical training in optimized tapping techniques, and end-to-end sustainability practices with a view to enhancing productivity and quality.
DPL’s comprehensive assistance towards optimization of smallholder rubber production also extends to material assistance setting up of rubber plant nurseries and the provision of high quality tapping knives, rain guards, aprons, fertilizers.
Moving beyond direct support in terms of rubber production, Firstlight has since expanded the scope of its operations to also encompass community capacity building initiatives in the fields of healthcare, education, sanitation and other critical areas capable of driving significant and meaningful improvements to the overall quality of living for these communities.
DPL Managing Director, Dr. Mahesha Ranasoma stated “Corporate social responsibility is a vital component in the success of Dipped Products and the Hayleys Group of companies. Through a dedicated team effort, we have been able to achieve widespread international recognition for the quality of our products while adding even greater value through our pioneering ‘Fair Trade’ model. We hope that these efforts will demonstrate how powerful CSR strategies can be incorporated into a successful business model in order to add further value to the end consumer in an ethical and sustainable manner,”
FirstLight started with 4 farmers in 2007. By 2008, the base increased to 148 farmers who contributed 12% of the field latex supply to DPL. By 2016, the farmer base has grown more than 10 fold to 1620 and their contribution to DPL’s field latex requirement has grown to more than 45% of the total requirement.
Dipped Products PLC is a fully integrated rubber glove manufacturer producing a continuing stream of high value, new product innovations in protective hand wear that is renowned for quality and performance. A subsidiary of the Hayleys Group, DPL currently services up to approximately 5 percent of the demand for household and industrial gloves in developed and emerging markets worldwide. Backed by over four decades of extensive experience and technical expertise, DPL ranks among the world’s largest manufacturers in the hand protection industry.