Stakeholder engagement

An essential part of fulfilling the IKEA sustainability commitments is working together with others. It’s important to develop strong and meaningful relationships. When we work together, we can drive and support change, learn, and inspire each other and find the best solutions.

Our key stakeholder groups are:

Two young IKEA store co-workers in yellow t-shirts are moving flat-packs in the self-serve warehouse area.

Co-workers

The 231,000 IKEA co-workers from around the world share a special set of values and a vision to enable people to live a better, more sustainable everyday life. They come together in diverse, inclusive and open IKEA environments, where each can offer something unique. Every co-worker plays a role in creating a better business.

Communities

We engage in the communities where we operate to learn and share ideas while working collaboratively to create positive impacts on the environment, livelihoods and local economy.

A man with a yellow helmet is operating a machine that moves heavy objects, loading logs onto the back of a red truck.

Suppliers and partners

We work with over 1,600 direct suppliers and service providers in the areas of home furnishing, transport, logistics and distribution services, components and food to minimise the environmental footprint of the total IKEA supply chain and beyond, while improving working conditions. There are millions of workers who, through our suppliers and service providers, source, make and transport our products and components, provide food for our restaurants, and supply essential services to IKEA companies.

Customers

In order to live up to the IKEA vision of creating a better everyday life for the many people, we need to understand the needs of our customers. The IKEA business engages with customers in many ways, such as in stores, online, by visiting them at home and via IKEA FAMILY. Each year, IKEA co-workers conduct thousands of home visits around the world. The data and insights collected are used in the development of IKEA products and services. Since 2016, we’ve also conducted an annual global survey about life at home around the world. The results are published in the Life at Home Report.

Pär Stenmark from Inter IKEA Group participates in a panel discussion at the United Nations Climate Change Conference.

Partners and collaborators

IKEA partners and collaborates with many external organisations that are committed to tackling large and complex global sustainability challenges, that both impact and are impacted by the IKEA business. Our partners and collaborators include businesses, governments, universities and NGOs.

Cross-topic collaborations

A family of five eating and laughing together at a dining table in a home decorated in black and white.

Celebrating over 20 years of partnership with WWF

For over twenty years, IKEA and WWF have been working side by side to protect and responsibly manage natural resources and improve livelihoods around the world, as well as take a holistic approach to biodiversity, climate change, forest landscapes, water stewardship and cotton. Through specific projects around the globe, the partnership has, for example, supported Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) certification of more than 36 million hectares of forests, trained 60,000 cotton farmers on Climate Smart Practices in India and Pakistan, worked together to raise awareness about the role businesses play to eliminate water pollution and enable efficient water use and collaborated on guidance to help companies tackle the climate crisis.

Making sustainability more measurable with WRI

Inter IKEA Group has a longstanding partnership with the World Resources Institute (WRI), with a core focus to make sustainability topics measurable and enable decision-making. The main topics we are partnering on are climate change, forestry, food and water. Since 2021, Inter IKEA Group deepened its partnership with and support of WRI by also becoming a member of the Corporate Consultative Group.(CCG). Through CCG membership and broader engagements with WRI, IKEA both receives advice on these topics and engages in initiatives such as the Greenhouse Gas Protocol and the Cool Food Pledge.

A broad collaboration with WBCSD

Since 2019, the IKEA business has developed and broadened its engagement with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), engaging across topics ranging from climate, food, healthy and sustainable living, nature to inequality. This work takes the form of contributing to dedicated workstreams and programmes, as well as supporting WBCSD advocacy around key events and legislation. IKEA has also been part of shaping the WBCSD’s flagship Vision 2050 Time to Transform report.

Working with governments and authorities

Governments and authorities around the world are taking steps to regulate sustainable business development. One good example of this development is the EU Green Deal. The EU Green Deal is led by the European Commission and has enormous potential to positively transform the economy in a way that benefits people, the planet, and businesses. For IKEA, we see the Green Deal as an important opportunity to lay the groundwork for future ways of working in Europe and globally. As the European Green Deal sets out various legislative and non-legislative proposals, IKEA continues to actively share our experience with policymakers on how we are transforming into a circular and climate positive business. As a purpose led business, IKEA aims to be a progressive industry leader in partnership with governments and authorities throughout this process in the EU and all markets where we operate our business.

Credible and transparent sustainability standards

IKEA has been collaborating with the ISEAL Alliance for over 10 years. This has given us the insight necessary to make IWAY, our supplier code of conduct, more robust and credible over time. ISEAL Alliance sets the minimum requirements that sustainability frameworks need to fulfil, and ‘ISEAL code-compliant members’ are among the more credible sustainability standards currently available in the world. Examples of standards that the IKEA business uses today are certification schemes like Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance, Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) and Marine Stewardship Council (MSC).

Inter IKEA Group has been a member of the Steering Group for revision of the ISEAL Credibility Principles, and also a member of the Technical Committee and the ISEAL Stakeholder Council.

Calling for a strengthened global framework for chemicals and waste

The IKEA business is a member of the High Ambition Alliance on Chemicals and Waste, a group of committed leading ministers from the whole UN region, intergovernmental organisations, industry and civil society. The ambition is to enhance awareness, ensure strong commitments and through this promote the sound management of chemicals and waste at all levels.

Supporting the Global Plastic Treaty

We have recently joined the Business Coalition for a Global Plastics Treaty which aims at bringing together businesses and financial institutions committed to supporting the development of an ambitious, effective and legally binding UN Treaty to end plastic pollution. The coalition is convened by the Ellen McArthur Foundation and WWF, in collaboration with aligned businesses and supported by strategic NGO partners.

Inspiring healthy and sustainable living

Founding member of the 50L Home Coalition

The IKEA business is also a founding member of the 50L Home Coalition – a global action-oriented initiative focusing on developing and scaling innovations in water and energy use in the home. The ambition is to make 50 litres of daily water use per person a new reality.

IKEA Nutrition Profiling System

To accelerate the transition to a more healthy and sustainable food offer, IKEA has launched a science-backed Food Nutrition Profiling System. The system is built upon criteria developed by the Choices International Foundation (Choices) that are scientifically grounded and globally applicable. Food and nutrition goals communicated by IKEA are entered into the externally available Nutrition Accountability Framework, published by the Global Nutrition Report.

The GlobeScan Healthy & Sustainable Living Report

The IKEA business has been a partner in initiating this report for several years, with the aim of providing global insights to help businesses better understand, engage with and mobilise people around healthy and sustainable living. Launched in 2019, this program consists of comparative and representative online surveys of almost 31,000 consumers in 31 markets around the world.

Contributing to limiting climate change to 1.5°C

A sunset over a field with high, wild grass, mountains in the background and a wind turbine in the middle.

Supporting the process to reach the Paris Agreement

IKEA has a responsibility to show the tangible actions we are taking here and now to tackle climate change and reduce the IKEA climate footprint. Since 2018, through our partner UNFCCC (UN Climate Change) we have been supporting the annual COP meetings, which bring together global stakeholders to finalise and implement the Paris Agreement. Our role at these meetings has been to show concrete action being taken here and now, engaging with partners through key spokespersons to highlight critical matters, expertise and in-kind donations that support our partners. 

Influencing climate standards

On an ongoing basis, the IKEA business participates in a range of consultations provided by various partners, aiming to make universal criteria and guidelines for climate action as robust as possible, in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C. As an example, IKEA has given input to the new Net-Zero Guidance by the Science-Based Targets initiative, which provided a company standard for what it means to reduce a business climate footprint in line with the 1.5°C target and defining reaching net-zero emissions.

IKEA has contributed - both financially and through active participation - towards the development of the GHG Protocol Land Sector and Removals Guidance, which will enable a standardised and credible way of measuring the effects of removing and storing carbon. IKEA is also engaging to improve more transparent data for ocean transports together with Clean Cargo (Methodology for Shipping emission factors) and the Smart Freight Centre (GLEC).

Enabling corporate action on measuring air pollution

Together with the Climate and Clean Air Coalition and Stockholm Environment Institute, IKEA initiated and contributed to the development of a new air pollution standard to enable companies to measure emissions of outdoor air pollution across an entire value chain and take action to reduce it. The first version of the guidance was launched in 2021. During 2022, IKEA and other members of the Alliance for Clean Air then piloted the guidance before being publicly launched at COP27. The objective is to enable companies to take joint action to both limit impact on climate change and reducing outdoor air pollution, contributing to clean air and healthier lives.

Accelerating climate action with Exponential Roadmap Initiative

Since 2019, IKEA has been a partner to Exponential Roadmap Initiative which brings together leading innovators, transformers and disruptors with a common mission to halve emissions by latest 2030 through exponential solutions and action. IKEA is a founding member of the 1.5°C Supply Chain Leaders and supports the SME Climate Hub, where sharing best practices is a key enabler.

Partnering towards zero-emission transports

To eliminate greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution from transportation, the IKEA business is part of many initiatives to reach zero-emission transportation. For ocean shipping, IKEA is part of Cargo Owners for Zero Emission Vessels (coZEV), which members aim to only purchase zero-emission fuels for ocean shipping by 2040. This supports the needed rapid decarbonization of the shipping industry. In FY22, IKEA was part of the launch of the Climate Group’s initiative EV100+ as a founding member. The initiative aims to transition the entire fleet of vehicles over 7.5 tonnes to zero-emission vehicles by 2040 across OECD markets, India and China. In addition, the IKEA franchisee Ingka Group is a member of the EV100 initiative to only use zero-emission vehicles for home deliveries by latest 2025.

Taking action on the degradation of nature and loss of biodiversity

A wild, green forest in the summer with several different types of trees, but mostly pine and spruce.

IKEA, WWF partnership raises awareness on biodiversity issues

Building on the agreed upon biodiversity focus for the WWF and IKEA partnership, together with H&M Group, Inter IKEA Group in FY22 convened around 40 businesses to share challenges, opportunities and learnings around their work to implement biodiversity objectives as part of their overall sustainability strategy and business operations. The discussion outcomes were shared in an op-ed in BusinessGreen in June and followed up through advocacy and engagements at COP15 in Montreal, Canada.

Science Based Targets for Nature Corporate Engagement Programme

IKEA is part of and supporting the corporate engagement program for Science Based Targets for Nature (SBTN), contributing to shaping the methodologies for science-based target setting and action on nature and biodiversity loss. This includes action on freshwater, the ocean, biodiversity, land use and more – building on the success of the widely adopted science-based targets for the climate.

Transforming into a circular business

The RÅVAROR collection of furniture, including a table, a day bed and storage furniture placed against a petrol blue wall.

Promoting circular economies in the furniture sector

IKEA has actively contributed to the work of EFIC – European Furniture Industries Confederation by participating in confederation efforts to promote a circular economy in the furniture sector. Through this, we have contributed to measuring the role of circular design, positive policy developments, supply chain cooperation and exchange of best practices to enable a systemic transformation. Together with other representatives of the furniture industry, we work collaboratively with regulators and governments to promote the right conditions for circular furniture businesses to thrive.

Partnering with Ellen McArthur Foundation

Together with the Ellen McArthur Foundation the IKEA business has contributed to the development of several tools aimed at laying the foundation for circular economies and maximising opportunities for sustainable development. IKEA was closely involved in the development of a glossary of terms to promote a shared understanding of terms like reuse, repair and recycle. We have also collaborated to support the creation of universally applicable circular economy policy goals. They provide a framework for national governments, cities and businesses to align their efforts as they transition into circular economies.

Contributing to a fair and equal world

Business Commission to Tackle Inequality

Inter IKEA Group has joined a new initiative from the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), aiming to elevate business action on inequality. WBCSD identifies climate change, biodiversity loss and inequality as the three major challenges of our time. The Business Commission will convene leading businesses and other key stakeholders to create a platform for collaboration and a compelling narrative and agenda for business action.

WEF Racial Justice Coalition

The IKEA business, through Ingka Group, has partnered with the World Economic Forum and 47 global businesses in order to advance racial and ethnic justice in the world of work. The partnering for racial justice in business initiative aims to build equitable and just workplaces for professionals with under-represented racial and ethnic identities, starting with Black inclusion. Participating companies are committed to ensure racial and ethnic justice is on their board’s agenda, take at least one firm action and to set a long-term strategy to become an anti-racist organisation.

International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Established in 1951, IOM is the leading inter-governmental organisation in the field of migration, and works closely with governmental, inter-governmental, and non-governmental partners. The IOM has long been a partner to and supported the IKEA business in developing its approach to ethical recruitment of migrant workers.

In recent years, IOM has continued to develop the International Recruitment Integrity System (IRIS), a voluntary certification process for international recruitment, where Inter IKEA Group is a member of the Advisory Committee and supports the overall development and implementation of IRIS.

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