Bertling ESG Sustainability Helpline

The F.H. Bertling EthicsPoint is a confidential channel for all companies in the F.H. Bertling Logistics Group, including its subcontractors. It allows you to raise concerns about possible violations of laws or Group Policies in the following areas:

  • Money laundering
  • Corruption
  • Foreign trade controls
  • Retaliation
  • Insider trading
  • Competition law
  • IT security
  • Data privacy
  • Threats to health, safety and environment
  • Sexual harassment or discrimination

Please report your concerns online, by phone, or even by mobile using a simple QR code.

Report your concern

Bertling is continually improving the sustainability of its supply chain to comply with new legislation such as the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (LkSG). This act requires qualifying companies to make reasonable efforts to ensure that there are no violations of human rights and/or legal environmental obligations in its business operations and in its supply chain, whether the work it is carried out at a location in Germany or abroad.

The supply chain includes Bertling’s own offices and warehouses, and primarily its direct subcontractors.

Part of the legislation also requires Bertling to establish a complaint procedure for workers and other interested parties to report potential risks.

To achieve this Bertling has recently developed its Navex EthicsPoint helpline, expanding its reporting scope to include wider ESG compliance topics. It is now possible to report breaches of policy or concerns relating to compliance, financial ethics, social ethics and data protection:


  • Anti-Corruption and Bribery
  • Trade Control/Compliance (Imports & Exports)
  • Anti-money Laundering

Financial Ethics

  • Antitrust and Fair Competition
  • Gifts and Hospitality
  • Conflicts of Interest

Social Ethics

  • Labor and Social Standards, including Respect in the Workplace
  • Human Rights
  • Environmental Protection, Health and Safety

Data Protection

  • Information Protection and Insider Trading
  • Protection of Personal Data
  • Company Property (Fraud, Theft)
  • Accurate Books and Records

The helpline includes access to relevant Bertling ESG Policies and guidance on what and how to report any breach of ESG policy, and has been made accessible to all interested parties (suppliers, clients, members of the public), who can report a concern via the website, by phone or by mobile using a simple QR code.

To those companies to which it applies, failing to respect the terms of the law can result in fines of up to two percent of the company's annual revenues.

The law came into effect in 2023, applying to companies with over 3000 employees in its first year, however in 2024, the provisions of the law will be extended to apply to all companies with over 1,000 employees.

Over the next few months although not required to, Bertling Logistics has determined to comply with the LkSG, which is in-line with our ESG policies, and will help us actively support our larger clients.

To comply with the LkSG a company must make reasonable efforts to ensure that there are no violations of human rights and/ or legal environmental obligations in its business operations and in its supply chain. This covers any provision of services, regardless of whether it is carried out at a location in Germany or abroad. The supply chain includes the companies own offices and warehouses, and primarily its direct subcontractors. It must carry out a risk analysis of the supply chain and implement preventive and remedial measures.

Compliance with Human Rights

These are internationally recognized agreements, in particular the ILO core labour standards, which are referred to in the LkSG and defines as human rights risks, in particular, child and forced labour as well as slavery, disregard of labour protection obligations and freedom of association, inequality and withholding of an adequate wage, certain environmental pollution relevant to human rights as well as land deprivation, torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.

Compliance with Environmental Law

With regard to the environmental legislation, companies are obliged to conduct due diligence including environment-related obligations arising from the Minamata Convention (risks from involvement in the production and disposal of mercury-containing products) the PoPs Convention (risks from the production or use of certain persistent organic pollutants) and the Basel Convention (risks from the import and export of waste).

What a company must do depends on the appropriateness criteria outlined in the legislation. and considers the following:

  1. Nature and scope of the business: for example, risks of the business and nature of products/services,
  2. The company's ability to influence the immediate causer: for example, considering the company's proximity to the risk,
  3. The expected severity of the breach: for example, possibility of breach of duty and intensity of impairment,
  4. The reversibility of the violation,
  5. The probability of an injury occurring: for example, the probability related to a possible injury, considering past injury actions,
  6. The nature of the causation contribution: for example, directness of causation, joint causation with suppliers or other involved actors. Similarly, causation may exist when an entity contributes in connection with the risk or injury.

Risk Management

Companies must introduce appropriate risk management or adapt their existing risk management. This includes, in particular, responsibilities/financial and personnel capacities in the relevant company departments, such as purchasing, compliance, sustainability, that implement the law in the company and such responsibilities/financial and personnel capacities that monitor implementation, e.g. in the form of a compliance or human rights officer.

Risk Analysis

Companies must determine at least once a year whether there is a risk that their own business activities or business activities in the supply chain violate human rights or environmental obligations.

The process for this regular risk analysis is as follows:

  1. abstract risk analysis – e.g. based on country and industry risks;
  2. concrete risk analysis of the abstractly identified risks – e.g. based on already available internal findings, web screenings, questionnaires, certifications, etc.;
  3. risk assessment and risk prioritization - after risk identification, companies must assess and prioritize risks based on the appropriateness criteria.

In addition to the regular risk analysis, companies must also conduct a risk analysis on an ad hoc basis if they have substantiated knowledge that a human rights or environmental violation appears possible at an indirect supplier or if significant changes or expansions in the risk situation arise within the scope of business activities.

Policy Statement

Companies must adopt a policy statement on their human rights strategy. This policy statement must contain the procedure for complying with human rights and environmental due diligence obligations in the supply chain, the specific risks and the company's human rights and environmental expectations of its employees and suppliers.

Risk Mitigations

Based on the results of the risk analysis, companies must take or review appropriate preventive and remedial measures. This applies, for example, to supplier selection and supplier control, the creation of (supplier) codes of conduct, the implementation of training courses, the procurement strategy and sustainable contract design, an audit concept, etc.

Complaints Procedure

Companies shall establish, implement and publish a complaints procedure in writing through which (potentially) affected persons and persons who have knowledge of possible violations can report human rights risks and violations.

Documentation and Reporting Obligations

The fulfilment of human rights and environmental due diligence obligations must be documented. In addition, a report must be prepared and published annually. This report must be submitted to the responsible authority.

If you have any questions regarding the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (Lieferkettensorgfaltsgesetz) please contact Chris Brooks, Director of Risk Quality and Compliance.


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