Small manufacturers call for widely-adopted ESG standards amid paperwork overload


Small manufacturers are calling for a widely-adopted set of ESG standards to decrease the amount of paperwork needed to fill every standard.

It comes as the Telegraph reported that some companies are being forced to fill out over 300 lined spreadsheets regarding their sustainability and ESG factors.

Advanced materials producer Goodfellow’s chief executive Simon Kenney said: “We heard the other day from an accreditation company that effectively registers companies as being ESG-compliant, which was working with one of our customers.

“As a result, we got a spreadsheet to fill in with 342 lines of things that they wanted to know. Considering we have 6,000 customers, if every customer sends us that it will be unworkable.

“It is just crazy. And of course, particularly for small businesses, it is going to impact productivity.”

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Kenney told the Telegraph that six full-time staff are currently handling issues such as net zero regulations, sanctions and Brexit issues.

He suggested that the government should make clear what the minimum expectations of small firms should be to minimise extra work.

The government said it was reviewing red tape as part of efforts to reduce the burden on small businesses.

A spokesman for the Department for Business and Trade said: “This government is taking action against burdensome red tape with our smarter regulation programme, seizing the benefits of Brexit.

“As part of this we want larger companies and investors to understand the impact of additional red tape and encourage them to reduce the number of requests for information they make to small businesses.”


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