The Environment

Basic Stance

The ITO EN Group strongly recognizes its important responsibility to protect the global environment, pass it on to the next generation, and to ensure sustainability. For this reason, we have set environmental targets according to the ITO EN Group Environmental Policy, which is based on the contents of the SDGs for a sustainable global society and environment, and are promoting activities accordingly.

  • Established: March 2001
  • Revised: February 2019

The ITO EN Group Environmental Policy

Basic Environmental Principles

Under the principle of "Always Putting the Customer First," the ITO EN Group strongly recognizes that protecting the global environment shared by all humans and passing it on to the next generation are the most important tasks and environmental impact is a risk involved in our business activities. With reference to the SDGs as sustainable social and environmental goals, we will work on environmental preservation voluntarily and continuously by ensuring the observance of laws and regulations while considering the overall supply chain (value chain). We will contribute to realizing a sustainable society and environment through sustainable consumption and production, with efforts for balance with nature, retention and appropriate use of natural capital, and development of a food culture that is in harmony with nature, based on the concept of Creating Shared Value (CSV), which enables both the solving of social issues and the development of the ITO EN Group.

Environmental Action Guidelines

Area Environmental Action Guidelines
Reduction of environmental impact We recognize and strive to minimize the impact of the Group's overall business activities on the global environment and society. Accordingly, we work to minimize environmental impact throughout the product life cycle, including product planning and development, procurement, manufacturing and logistics, sales and marketing, consumption and disposal of the product.
Compliance with Regulations and Agreements / Prevention of Pollution / Environmental Management We comply with laws, regulations and agreements related to our activities, products and services; work to prevent environmental pollution; and aim to enhance our environmental management.
Effective Resource Utilization We promote the use of sustainable resources such as through resource and energy conservation, suppression of emissions, proper disposal, and recycling.
The Environment Supply Chain We promote forms of sustainable production and consumption throughout the entire supply chain (value chain), from product planning and development, procurement, manufacturing and logistics, to sales and marketing.
Response to Climate Change We will work to prevent global warming by contributing to measures against climate change.
Conservation of Natural Resources and Protection of Biodiversity We will make efforts for the appropriate conservation and management of resources such as water resources, the oceans, the continents and forests and the preservation of biodiversity and contribute to sustainable agriculture and regional construction.
Environmental Communication We will increase our environmental awareness and develop human resources who can make social and environmental contributions, with each of us acting with awareness of a sustainable society and environment. We will also enhance communication with our stakeholders and promote partnership in environmental activities.

ITO EN Group Medium- to Long-Term Environmental Goals

Based on its management principle of “Always Putting the Customer First”, the ITO EN Group believes that it is its corporate social responsibility to protect the global environment shared by all of humanity, and pass it on to the next generation. Global environmental problems such as the increase in intensely hot weather, floods and landslides as a result of climate change due to global warming, and the problem of marine plastic garbage are now pressing issues for global society.

These kinds of issues are also key issues in the ITO EN Group's business activities. In September 2020, we formulated the ITO EN Group Medium- to Long-Term Environmental Goals with regard to our containers and packaging, and our response to climate change, based on the ITO EN Group Environmental Policy. Through these goals, we are further driving our initiatives to tackle environmental problems, with the aim of contributing to the creation of a sustainable society.

Medium- to Long-Term Environmental Goals

Containers and packaging
  • Three R's (Recycle, Reduce, Replace & Reuse) + Clean (environmental conservation)
  • Aim to increase the ratio of recycled materials, including bio-derived materials, used as materials for producing PET bottles to 100% by 2030
CO2 emissions reduction targets
  Fiscal 2030 Fiscal 2050
Scope 1, 2 26% reduction in total emissions
(compared to FY2018)
50% reduction in total emissions
(compared to FY2018)
Scope 3 26% reduction in emission intensity
(compared to FY2018)
50% reduction in emission intensity
(compared to FY2018)

Environmental Management

The ITO EN Group operates an environmental management system based on the ISO 14001 standard and supported by the ITO EN GROUP Environmental Policy, and conducts continuous environmental activities. So far, we have obtained (ISO) certification at the production division, sales division, head office divisions, and a portion of our affiliate companies. We have also set up the CSR/ESG Promotion Committee under the Executive Board. This committee deliberates on the state of progress of environmental policies, environmental targets and activities.

Environmental Management System

The CSR/ESG Promotion Committee (chaired by President & CEO Daisuke Honjo) keeps track of the actual state of issues relating to the environment, deliberates on policies, goals and strategic measures to respond to these issues, and reports to senior management (the Board of Directors and the Executive Board).

The ITO EN Group also sets KPIs within its environmental management system, based on the ISO14001 standard, to drive initiatives for achieving its environmental targets. So far, we have obtained certification for our production, sales, and head office divisions, and some of our affiliated companies *.

* In terms of affiliated companies, we have obtained certification for ITO EN Sangyo, Ltd., Okinawa ITO EN, Ltd. and Green Value Co., Ltd.

Environmental Management System

Containers and packaging

The ITO EN Group is engaged in proactive efforts such as the development of technologies that contribute to creating more lightweight PET plastic bottles and reducing plastic usage, and introducing environmentally friendly paper containers.

At the same time, in November 2020, we published the ITO EN Group Policy on Plastics, in an effort to tackle the challenges of transforming into a more environmentally friendly recycling-based society, against the backdrop of problems such as marine plastic garbage, climate change, and other problems which are now pressing issues for global society. By doing so, the ITO EN Group aims to contribute to the creation of a sustainable society by further driving initiatives aimed at achieving more effective utilization of resources and reducing environmental impact throughout the entire life cycles of the products that it sells.

ITO EN Group Policy on Plastics

Recycling (circulation of resources)
  • Aim to increase the ratio of recycled materials, including bio-derived materials, used as materials for producing PET bottles to 100% by 2030.
  • We will promote the use of recycled materials for purposes other than PET bottle production.
  • We will carry out activities to increase the recycling ratio in collaboration with governments, industry associations and business partners.
Reduce (resource-saving)
  • We will change container designs and improve production methods with a view to continuously cutting the weight of containers and packages and reducing their consumption.
Replacing & Reusing (replacing with environmentally friendly materials and reusable containers)
  • We will increasingly use bio-derived materials and biodegradable materials.
  • We will encourage food and drink businesses to switch to reusable containers.
Clean (environmental conservation)
  • We will encourage sorted collection of plastic waste for effective use of plastic resources, take part in cleanup and other social contribution activities and provide constant support for environmental conservation activities at different locations.

Climate change and prevention of air pollution

We are aware that climate change and its impact constitute a serious social issue that we face. In addition, because the raw materials of our mainstay products are agricultural products, such as tea, vegetables, fruits, and coffee beans, we understand that the tea leaves and beverages business as our main business has the risk of being affected by natural disasters, which is our material management issue.

Promotion of energy savings

In order to promote the use of sustainable energy, all departments in Ito En operate by using the PDCA cycle of ISO14001.

Conservation of biodiversity

  • Established: March 2013
  • Revised: August 2016

ITO EN Group Basic Policy on Biodiversity Protection

  • 1. With "We Love Nature" as our corporate message, we express our appreciation for the bounty of nature and aim for a harmony between the cycles of nature and business activities, while striving to respond to climate change through the appropriate conservation and management of water resources, oceans, land areas, forests, etc. based on the contents of SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) for a sustainable global society and environment.
  • 2. The ITO EN Group acts on the biodiversity crisis with a global perspective.
  • 3. Through the business activities of the ITO EN Group, we voluntarily and steadily address biodiversity and ecological conservation, and sustainable use of resources.
  • 4. We advance efforts towards a sustainable natural cycle type society.
  • 5. We promote efforts aimed at creating biodiversity as well as the environment, agriculture, food, tradition and culture of the surrounding area.
  • 6. We collaborate and cooperate with stakeholders and continue to engage in environmental conservation activities from the perspective of preserving biodiversity.
  • 7. We support regional efforts aiming to train people and build a society that nurtures biodiversity.

Water management

In order to promote the use of sustainable energy, all departments in Ito En operate by using the PDCA cycle of ISO14001.

"Making Japan Beautiful Through Tea" and "Making Lake Biwa Beautiful Through Tea" Projects

Through these initiatives, ITO EN donates a portion of all Oi Ocha beverage product sales to the environmental conversation and development activities around Japan. ITO EN employees also participate in these conversation and development activities.

Making Japan Beautiful Through Tea and Making Lake Biwa Beautiful Through Tea Projects

Waste and recycling

ITO EN works on the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle). Under our environmental management system (ISO 14001), we have set a target on the reduction of waste emissions and take initiatives through continuous efficiency improvement. Empty containers and other waste are collected by sales bases, and all of the collected containers are professionally recycled by appropriate operators. In addition, we strive to recycle foodstuff residue produced during production processes, products past the use-by date from sales bases, and other waste by outsourcing the operations to recycling operators capable of processing them in compliance with the Food Recycling Act, in principle.

Used Tea Leaves Recycling System

We recycle most used tea leaves from the production process into fertilizer and animal feed. Further, ITO EN has developed a unique Used Tea Leaves Recycling System, under which we use a portion of the used tea leaves as a component in various products, including paper products, building materials and resins, which are manufactured into a variety of products and distributed by our partner companies. This enables us to reduce the use of raw materials and conserve resources.

In addition, used tea leaves are blended with materials such as paper without dehydrating them. This means that they do not go through a drying process, which would involve the consumption of oil resources and CO2 emissions. This initiative has three environmental benefits: resource conservation, reduction of CO2 emissions, and recycling.

Business cards
Business cards
Paper napkins
Paper napkins
Empty container collection boxes
Empty container collection boxes
Ballpoint pens
Ballpoint pens
Daily necessities
Daily necessities
Vending machines
Vending machines
Tatami mats
Tatami mats

Environmentally Friendly Lightweight PET Bottle
Reduction of Bottle Weight Through the Development and Introduction of the NS System

We have introduced a manufacturing method called the "NS system" for Oi Ocha. "NS" stands for "Non-Sterilant", meaning that sterilants are not used. Since we do not use these chemicals to sterilize PET bottles, we were able to reduce the amount of water used while ensuring safety and could also reduce the weight of PET bottles by about 30%. Furthermore, this method maintains the fresh taste of green tea by bottling it at room temperature.

The "NS system" is environmentally friendly and enhances taste. We will continue our commitment to technological development in order to coexist with the environment.

vending machine

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