Products and Solutions for a Sustainable Future

Enhancing the sustainability performance of our portfolio
Emphasis on contributing to specific value chain needs

Society and our customers have been taking a greater interest in the business contribution to sustainability over the past decades. We are committed to understand these evolving expectations, so we might seize opportunities as well as minimize risks.

Why – Objective

Our customers can expect from BASF the consistent and innovative solutions they have always received. At the same time, they are looking to contribute to a more sustainable future where being environmentally and socially responsible goes hand in hand with running a profitable business. Therefore, BASF has embedded sustainability in its corporate purpose: “We create chemistry for a sustainable future.” This ambition is directly linked to a number of business factors:

  • Growing customer needs to differentiate with sustainability
  • New laws and standards in all value chains related to sustainability
  • Changing societal and business environments prompting demand for sustainable products

We therefore cooperate with our customers in creating and driving more sustainable solutions, which makes good business sense for both.

How – Evaluation of each solution

By identifying key drivers and issues in our customers’ industries, we are able to assess the sustainability contribution of each of our products in its specific application.

With our approach we evaluate the entire value chain considering industry- and region-specific views in our markets. We strive to achieve a balance between the three dimensions of sustainability:

  • Economy: e.g. potential cost savings for customers through the use of our products
  • Environment: e.g. ensuring standards are met, developing environmentally sound solutions
  • Society: e.g. enhancing safety in production, use or end-of-life, stakeholder perception of solutions

Finally each solution is assigned to one of four categories (Accelerator, Performer, Transitioner, Challenged) according to its contribution to sustainability. Although different industries vary in their specific needs, we are able to cluster our Accelerator solutions into predefined universal sustainability benefits (e.g. resource efficiency).

20140731_BASF_SSS_Infografik 1.2_DE_RGB_RZ

Steering the portfolio

This detailed analysis and transparent classification allow us to both improve individual solutions and steer the entire portfolio. It also enables further integration of sustainability into our strategic, R&D and customer support processes. The goals are:

  • Increase our portfolio of innovative and sustainable solutions making customers more successful
  • Reduced environmental impact along the value chain, contributing to improved quality of life
  • Better mitigation of risks associated with sustainability

All of this helps us to ensure long-term business success – an integral part of our “We create chemistry“ strategy.

The whole approach has been assured by PricewaterhouseCoopers AG Germany (PwC).

Accelerator products contribute particularly to sustainability in the value chain, and are characterized by, on average, higher growth rates and profitability. We have therefore set ourselves a concrete goal in 2015: By 2020, we aim to raise the proportion of sales from Accelerator products to 28%.

For all products that are classified as Challenged and do not fulfill our major sustainability criteria, we want to develop prompt plans of action. These action plans can include research projects, reformulations or even replacing one product with an alternative product.

Dr. Tim Balensiefer
IR Manager Sustainability
+49 621 60-43267

BASF Sustainability Presentations


A more sustainable portfolio through Sustainable Solution Steering

BASF releases the manual of its Sustainable Solution Steering method to help third parties measure their products’ contribution to sustainability within their various markets and industries and to increase this contribution through targeted steps. The manual describes the Sustainable Solution Steering method in detail and explains how BASF systematically reviewed and evaluated the sustainability aspects of all relevant product applications in its portfolio. BioMar is one of BASFs customers who already applied the method successfully.

More information

Some relevant numbers

- 60,000 solutions in scope
- 2,300 experts involved worldwide
~ 13,000 Accelerator solutions, with
> €15.5 billion in sales in 2017
> 60% of R&D budget spent on Accelerator projects in 2017
- 27.3% of BASF products analyzed (by sales) today already make a particular contribution to sustainability

Last Update 28 June 2018