Deuter Performance Check 2018

Deuter has shown advanced results on performance indicators and maintains its leader status within FWF. With a score of 87 points and a monitoring percentage of 97%, Deuter meets the required monitoring percentage of brands having 3+ years of membership.

Deuter has a long-term relationship with a Vietnamese partner that produces backpacks. The supplier consists of three production locations where the partners actively work towards the improvement of working conditions. The brand produces its sleeping bags at one supplier in China and one in Myanmar, with whom it has also developed long-term relationships.

In 2017-2018, the Vietnamese supplier increased its number of subcontractors used for production to 26. Still, this only amounts to 3% of Deuter’s total production volume. According to Deuter, the subcontractors are either specialised in the assembling of specific components or support the main supplier in case of peak production. Deuter’s efforts to identify subcontractors is at an advanced level. However, the increasing use of subcontractors also poses serious risks as the working conditions at the subcontractors are often not at the same level as the main factories. The brand should be commended for the fact that it started to monitor working conditions and audit the subcontractors, including a printing subcontractor. At the same time, the audit report showed serious health and safety violations and non-payment of the legal minimum wage.

Therefore, FWF recommends Deuter to consolidate the number of subcontractors, increase leverage and start actively monitoring working conditions. FWF further recommends Deuter to learn more about standard minutes per style, especially in relation to production planning and pricing. Its partnership model offers unique opportunities to increase wages towards a living wage level.

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