HERMA increasingly views sustainable action as a strategic corporate task. This is why the packaging and product labelling specialist with its headquarters in Filderstadt, Germany, has for the first time created the position of Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) and a sustainability management department. Marcus Gablowski (42) has been appointed CSO and reports directly to the board of directors.
One of his main tasks will be to work with an eight-member sustainability team to develop a strategy by mid-year that will allow the company to become completely climate-neutral by 2040 – taking into account the entire supply chain, including all the precursors and raw materials that are used. The company's own production of self-adhesive material, labels and labelling machines in Filderstadt has been climate-neutral since 2021, some of which is being offset.
"Extending climate neutrality to the entire supply chain by involving all suppliers will be a huge effort," stressed the two HERMA Managing Directors Sven Schneller and Dr. Guido Spachtholz. "But time is probably the most precious resource we have to curb global warming. It was therefore important for us to coordinate all existing activities in this regard from now on, to promptly develop an ambitious plan for the entire group and then to implement it in a focused manner. The best way to achieve this is to clearly define responsibilities.
"As a further step in this direction, HERMA has also joined the world's largest sustainability initiative: The United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). In this way, HERMA is committed to responsible corporate governance in accordance with the ten defined UNGC principles and the so-called sustainable development goals (SDG), which also plays an important role in the development of the HERMA Sustainability Strategy.
The graduate chemical engineer Marcus Gablowski has been with the company since 2004. He mainly worked in process engineering and development. Most recently, he managed the adhesive development and special coatings department in the Self-adhesive Materials division at HERMA. In this role, he advanced a number of environmental and sustainability issues on the product side in recent years. This includes, for example, special label adhesive that supports closed material circuits when recycling plastic packaging and optimises the use of reusable systems. In 2019, HERMA was awarded the German Packaging Award in the "Sustainability" category for the InNo-Liner linerless labelling system, which uses an innovative, initially non-sticky adhesive.
"Marcus Gablowski has a strong understanding of complex process-related relationships. In addition, his extensive experience comes from numerous solution-oriented product developments, in which aspects of sustainability have become increasingly important in recent years. He has made a decisive contribution to the fact that HERMA is perceived as a leading player in the field of self-adhesive materials when it comes to sustainable solutions," says Managing Director Dr. Guido Spachtholz. "These are the best conditions in order to be able to act effectively, convincingly and credibly as CSO for the entire HERMA Group.” Marcus Gablowski stresses: "I am very happy in this role, partly because I am truly convinced that we need to be much quicker and more effective as a company in this area. I have full confidence that we can succeed in turning things around. HERMA has already taken some important steps in this area. We are not starting from scratch. But it is also clear that the biggest and most challenging stretch is still ahead of us. With a well thought-out plan, we will be well prepared for this."