The production of processed foods and beverages represents one of the world’s most stable growth markets that is expected to enjoy continuous growth over the coming decades. As a technology leader, GEA offers these markets machinery, components, systems and process plants that guarantee safe process control as well as highest efficiency and hygiene standards.
GEA places a high priority on transparent and responsible corporate governance and management aimed at long-term value enhancement. Thus, GEA aligns its activities with the recognized principles of corporate governance and nearly fully complies with the recommendations of the German Corporate Governance Code.
Compliance is GEA’s top priority. This is why all GEA managers and employees must comply with the law and the relevant guidelines. Wrongful or even criminal actions as well as violations of internal corporate guidelines will not be tolerated. GEA has drawn up detailed guidelines – in particular an Anti-Corruption and a Competition Guideline – that come with binding guidelines for action. Periodic training and monitoring help avoid or detect non-compliant conduct at an early stage. In this context, employees may be instrumental in drawing attention to potential compliance violations.
By means of the so-called Integrity System employees – including external third parties, for instance business partners – are given the possibility of directly reporting severe compliance issues or violations of the “Codes of Conduct – principles of social responsibility” via an internet-based system. In this respect, GEA attaches importance to an open corporate culture.
The Integrity System offers an additional communication channel if the standard reporting lines fail to apply. For instance, this may be the case if immediate action is required in the event of gross misconduct. This system also allows anonymous reporting as far as this is permitted in the country in question. Nonetheless, this system shall not constitute a general platform for complaints. Therefore, it only comprises reporting categories that embrace a substantial risk to the Company, its employees and all other stakeholders.
Codes of Conduct
Together with its European Works Council, GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft adopted Codes of Conduct (principles of social responsibility) back in October 2007. They outline a binding set of values, principles and modes of behavior that govern corporate conduct at GEA Group level. With these ethical and legal standards, GEA has made a clear commitment to free and fair global trade as a vital precondition for sustained global economic growth. Wherever possible, the Group supports measures designed to combat underdevelopment in Third World countries while fully accepting its corporate social responsibility. Likewise, GEA welcomes the principles of the UN Global Compact initiative and endorses all internal and external corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives taking place within the framework of the advancing process of internationalization. The Group has pledged to respect human rights and the core labor standards developed by the International Labour Organization (ILO). In addition, GEA fully complies with the OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises.