Human Rights

We take our role to “respect, protect and remedy” human rights seriously.

Although we operate mostly in countries where there are numerous regulations addressing human rights issues and there is low risk of human rights abuses, we take our role to “respect, protect and remedy” human rights seriously. We have expanded our policies to include a Supplier Code of Conduct and we developed a due diligence process for suppliers based on relevant sustainability issues, including human rights.

Should a human rights issue arise, we have procedures in place to address it in accordance with applicable legislative procedures. As part of our participation in the United Nations Global Compact, we have made the following human rights commitments:

  • We will not take part in human rights abuse, and will not engage or be complicit in any activity that solicits or encourages human rights abuse.
  • In providing for the protection of company personnel and assets by public or private security forces, we will promote respect for, and protection of, human rights.

Read more about Agrium's responsible supply chain efforts in our 2014-2015 Sustainability Report.

Reporting on Human Rights and Corporate Social Responsibility in the Western Sahara

As part of our commitment to corporate social responsibility, our stakeholders and our ongoing supply chain due diligence, Agrium commissioned an independent assessment (the “Assessment”) of our impact on human rights in relation to sourcing phosphate rock from the Western Sahara.  This has been done in relation to our supplier relationship with Office Chérifien des Phosphates (OCP) headquartered in Morocco.

This independent Assessment was conducted by the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP (“NRF”) and was guided by Agrium’s Supplier Code of Conduct, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (“UNGP”) and associated international standards. NRF additionally engaged Lloyd Lipsett of LKL Consulting to independently review the methodology and analysis to confirm that the Assessment conforms to the expectations set by the UNGP.

The Assessment has been published in its entirety by Agrium and can be found here. Agrium’s goal in publishing this Assessment is to publicly communicate how Agrium addresses actual or potential human rights impacts, in a manner that is accessible and useful for Agrium’s stakeholders, consistent with international standards such as the UNGP.

The findings of the Assessment included recommendations to Agrium on continued monitoring and use of leverage to address actual or potential human rights impacts associated with the supplier relationship. Ultimately the Assessment concludes that “Agrium’s supply chain relationship with OCP is not causing or contributing to potential or actual negative human rights impacts in the Western Sahara”. Agrium accepts these findings and will take steps to implement the recommendations.

Read "An Update on Sourcing Phosphate from Western Sahara" in our 2014-2015 Sustainability Report.

Moving Forward:

Agrium is currently evaluating its long term phosphate rock supply options.

Agrium is committed to continuing to monitor the actual and potential human rights impacts associated with the supplier relationship and continue to use its leverage as appropriate to mitigate potential or actual human rights impacts associated with the supplier relationship. We have and continue to encourage OCP to transparently report the company’s sustainability performance in Western Sahara.  We are pleased that OCP’s website contains increasingly detailed information on the economic and social impacts of their operations in the region as well as their efforts to support community development.

Going forward, Agrium will continue to monitor due diligence efforts with regard to the supply agreement through:

  • Continued monitoring of Agrium’s relationship with OCP to monitor ongoing compliance with the Supplier Code of Conduct and supply agreement.  This diligence will be refreshed regularly.
  • Continued engagement with stakeholders
  • Continued engagement with OCP
  • Engage external experts to advise on the application of international human rights standards.