Material topics and SDGs

The material topics are the core elements of our sustainability work, and they provide the basis for the related reporting. As stipulated by the legal requirements and standards, we review these material topics at regular intervals: the most recent review was undertaken ahead of the reporting for the 2023 fiscal year. Our appraisal included changes to the regulatory environment, and we aligned the topics even more closely to our core business activities and processes. As in the past, we continue to establish specific links between our material topics and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). 

Identifying the material topics is the prerequisite for meeting the requirements of Swiss legislation on non-financial reporting, and for correctly applying the GRI standards. As part of our annual reporting, we review our material topics to ensure that they are up to date and legally compliant.

Updating our material topics

We carried out a comprehensive reappraisal of our material topics in 2022. For each topic, internal stakeholders determined the financial materiality (risks and opportunities for business success) and the impact materiality (effects of business activities on the economy, society and the environment).

For the 2023 reporting year, management reappraised these topics according to the principles of double materiality. The focal points of this reappraisal were compliance with Switzerland’s legal requirements for non-financial reporting, and transparent reporting. For this purpose, we undertook a critical review of the material topics for the 2022 reporting year and identified overlaps in the subject matter covered. We analysed the content and reassigned it to clearly defined and meaningful material topics. Water was defined as a new material topic, and the concept for addressing it is currently being developed. In the coming years, we plan to determine the exposure of our plants to the risk of water stress, and to develop the necessary measures from these findings.

The restructured material topics for 2023 support transparent reporting, and help us not only with the strategic orientation of our sustainability management but also with identifying challenges and defining future ambitions.

For reporting purposes, we structure our material topics according to economic impact, environmental impact, social impact, and governance. The CO reference table shows the extent to which our material topics cover the non-financial matters required by Swiss legislation (article 964b, Swiss Code of Obligations (CO)).

Materiality matrix


Contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The 193 member states of the United Nations decided to adopt the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015. They state the sustainability targets to be achieved throughout the world, and they provide a frame of reference that covers the different dimensions of sustainability. Not only countries but also companies are called upon to achieve the goals.

By linking our material topics to the SDGs, Vetropack can place the impact of our business activities to promote sustainable development in the context of the global Sustainable Development Goals, and this approach also allows us to define our own ambitions. When redefining the material topics for the current reporting, we also adapted the allocation of the topics to the SDGs. We focus on those SDGs where we can have a significant impact.

We endeavour to establish ourselves as an Employer of Choice, and we promote continuous learning and personal development for our employees by providing a comprehensive learning infrastructure for them, and by investing in opportunities for basic and continuing education and training. By creating a learning organisation, we are contributing to the attainment of SDG 4.

Material topic:

Employee satisfaction

Promote basic and continuing education and training

We foster diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels of the hierarchy by responding to our employees’ needs, addressing any inequalities that may exist, and paying fair salaries and wages. Non-discriminatory working conditions based on transparent processes boost our employees’ motivation, engagement, and willingness to perform.

Material topic:

Diversity, equity and inclusion

Create a diverse and inclusive workplace environment  

We make responsible use of water in our production processes by utilising this resource in closed loops. We are committed to systematic monitoring of water withdrawal, water consumption and water discharge, and we comply with the statutory requirements.

Material topic:


Make responsible use of water resources

We make use of modern infrastructure to manufacture our glass products, and we deploy innovative technologies. Employees in our plants benefit from industrial processes that match the latest technological standards. By leveraging innovations, we reduce the CO2 emissions from our production processes. Echovai – our most sustainable and innovative glass product – protects the climate. Our internal and external stakeholder groups benefit because we make our operating processes efficient by including digitalisation as an element of innovations.

Material topic:


Promote the latest technologies and drive innovations ahead

Thanks to our products – glass containers – food and beverages can be kept for long periods and packaged safely. Glass packaging therefore reduces food wastage by consumers. Glass can be recycled, and glass containers can be refilled many times – so glass is suitable for the circular economy.

By using the highest possible share of recycled glass as a starting material for new glass packaging, we conserve natural resources and reduce the environmental impact of the manufacturing processes. At the same time, we minimise waste in our production processes and comply with environmental laws when disposing of waste.

Material topics:

Promote responsible consumption thanks to refillable and re-usable glass packaging 

Fossil-based energy sources are required to manufacture our glass products, so their production causes greenhouse gas emissions. Repairs to existing furnaces and construction of new furnaces give us our greatest leverage to promote climate protection by ensuring that the natural gas is used as efficiently as possible. Technical innovations such as oxyfuel or hybrid furnaces reduce the emissions associated with glass production. In 2022, we joined the Science Based Targets initiative and will reduce our greenhouse gases according to a science-based mitigation pathway going forward.

Material topic:

Climate protection

Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by following a science-based mitigation pathway aimed at protecting the climate