H.C. Starck’s tungsten supply chain declared compliant with Conflict Free Smelter Program
July 8, 2015
H.C. Starck, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of technology metals and advanced ceramics, has received confirmation for processing conflict-free tungsten raw materials. The corresponding audit was performed by an independent certification company on behalf of the Conflict Free Smelter Initiative (CFSi), a joint effort by the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI).
For its tantalum processing, H.C. Starck has already declared Conflict-Free Smelter several times since 2010. Tantalum and tungsten, along with tin and gold, are defined as conflict minerals in the US Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which was passed in 2010.
“Since H.C. Starck does not process any tungsten raw materials from conflict areas, we are not obligated to undergo this kind of audit. Still, we subjected our tungsten processing to the CFSi audit on a voluntary basis since procurement and processing of raw materials from conflict-free sources is the basis for our raw materials strategy,” stated Andreas Meier, CEO of H.C. Starck. “We are proud of the certification for our raw materials purchasing, since it is a seal of approval for our efforts toward sustainability,” he added.
Independent auditors commissioned by the CFSi audited the H.C. Starck sites in Germany and Vietnam that process tungsten on a detailed basis in May 2015 to see whether they meet the two organisations’ stringent requirements for processing of conflict-free raw materials. Alongside primary raw materials from audited mines, H.C. Starck’s sourcing of raw materials is increasingly also based on processing of secondary materials.
“Recycling of technology metals is one of our core competencies. We use innovative methods to process growing amounts of production residue, slag, scrap, and other secondary materials into high-quality, high-performance metal powders,” Meier continued. “By doing this, we secure our supply and reduce our dependence on globally fluctuating raw material prices.”
H.C. Starck fully endorses the position of the Dodd-Frank Act and the OECD not to purchase, process, or resell any raw materials used to finance or benefit armed groups. The company is a member of the ITRI Tin Supply Chain Initiative (iTSCi), which has developed a recognised tracking system to bring transparency to procurement of raw materials from conflict areas and regularly checks to ensure that member companies are implementing it.
H.C. Starck is also a founding member of the Tungsten Industry—Conflict Minerals Council (TI-CMC) and the Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade (PPA).
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