Achieving joint responsibility

As a company with international production activities and business operations, sustainable procurement and production processes are of paramount importance to HUGO BOSS. Subsequently we bind ourselves and oblige our suppliers to comply with recognized labor and social standards, and work together in reducing environmental impact throughout the production process.

Procurement and production at HUGO BOSS

HUGO BOSS products are manufactured all over the world. We produce approximately 20% of our total procurement in our own plants in Metzingen (Germany), Radom (Poland), Morrovalle (Italy) and Izmir (Turkey). These cover a significant share of our classic tailored menswear and womenswear collections. With around 4,000 employees, Izmir is HUGO BOSS’s largest production facility, and produces many of the suits, sports jackets, trousers and shirts, as well as women’s outerwear items. By producing in our own plants, we are able to retain important expertise within the company, for example on production technologies. Furthermore, quality standards can be developed independently. Sharing this knowledge with our partners is an important part of our procurement strategy, given that in addition to our in-house production, about 80% of our procurement comes from independent suppliers, manufactured to order or bought for resale. 

In this context, a careful selection of partners, cooperation based on mutual trust and the creation and maintenance of long-term strategic supplier relationships are very important. Aside from qualitative aspects, ensuring a common understanding of social and ecological requirements plays an important role in our sustainability management. 

An overview of the sourcing and production activities at HUGO BOSS can be found in our respective factsheet.

HUGO BOSS Suppliers

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HUGO BOSS bases its partnerships on high quality, mutual trust and transparency. Therefore, long-term and powerful relationships with our partners allow us to disclose all our active finished goods suppliers and their respective production sites. Our supplier list covers all 1st Tier productions sites that we plan to continue the partnership with in 2018 (excl. own production sites). This list is updated regularly and is available for download here. Due to these regular updates of the list, the number of suppliers differs from the number stated in the Sustainability Report.

For further questions please contact

HUGO BOSS Social Standards

HUGO BOSS commits itself and its suppliers to comply with the HUGO BOSS Social Standards, which are based on internationally recognized standards, such as the core conventions of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Compliance with the social standards is a prerequisite for including a company as a partner in the HUGO BOSS supplier portfolio. The standards include for example the prohibition of child and forced labor and require decent working conditions and wages. Furthermore, they include provisions on the adherence with environmental standards. The HUGO BOSS Social Standards apply to all employees in the production facilities of HUGO BOSS and all our external partners. 

In countries with inadequate national legislation, the HUGO BOSS Social Standards become the minimum standard. Compliance with these is verified through regular social audits. In the case of a violation of the social standards, HUGO BOSS works with the supplier to develop an action plan and checks the subsequent implementation. Overall, we strive to achieve a long-term cooperation based on mutual trust. However, if progress is inadequate and there is a lack of willingness to change, the company reserves the right to terminate the partnership. 

> HUGO BOSS Social Standards

Social audits

Before embarking on a business relationship, all finished goods suppliers must undergo a social audit. These are repeated regularly in the course of the cooperation (in form of announced, semi-announced or unannounced audits). 

The following criteria are evaluated in the social audit:

  • Compliance with national laws and international conventions
  • Ban on child and forced labor
  • Compliance with limits on working hours, breaks and vacation time
  • Ban on discrimination
  • Payment of fair wages
  • Right to freedom of association and collective bargaining
  • Rules on protection of the environment.

Fair compensation

HUGO BOSS is convinced that a fair compensation system operated by its partners is not only the basis for a long-term cooperative partnership, but is also the prerequisite for the workers to live independent lives. Therefore, HUGO BOSS contributes towards the establishment of industry-wide standards and is working on a compensation strategy for its suppliers’ employees. This is based upon the principles of the internationally recognized standards such as those of the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the German Partnership for Sustainable Textiles.

In accordance with the HUGO BOSS Social Standards, each supplier must pay its employees compensation in the form of money or other benefits of its choice. The compensation should ensure an acceptable minimum standard of living, provide a secure income and be regularly adjusted to changing basic conditions. As a result, HUGO BOSS requires that its suppliers pay at least the legal minimum wage or an appropriate and adequate industry wage, whichever is higher. The fundamental principles of fair compensation include the regulated payment of wages, the compensation of actual work done and worked hours, information on individual salaries (for example, through detailed salary statements), the right to collective bargaining and the avoidance of unequal compensation.

HUGO BOSS engagement in the supply chain

HUGO BOSS attaches great importance to cooperation with companies and organizations in order to achieve systematic sustainability improvements along the textile supply chain by joining forces. The following summarizes HUGO BOSS engagement in cooperations to improve labor and social standards in the supply chain.

Fair Labor Association (FLA):

After joining the FLA in 2014, HUGO BOSS was fully-accredited in 2018 for the first time and is now subject to regular re-accreditation audits. The implementation of the HUGO BOSS Social Compliance Program is monitored by independent audits conducted by the FLA at selected HUGO BOSS suppliers and the results are published on the FLA website. In addition, HUGO BOSS is working with various stakeholders in the “Fair Compensation” project to develop possible approaches for improving compensation and thus create new industry-wide standards.

Partnership for Sustainable Textiles (Initiative of the German Federal Government):

HUGO BOSS has been a member of the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles since 2015. The Company makes an active contribution to an industry-wide exchange and the development of joint target agreements by participating in working groups of the Partnership, for example on the subject of chemical management. In addition, HUGO BOSS as a member undertakes to set its own binding and verifiable targets based on jointly defined alliance goals, which must be published annually in a roadmap from 2018.

Furthermore, HUGO BOSS is particularly committed in the procurement region of Southeast Asia.

Initiative of the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles for Tamil Nadu:

In India, HUGO BOSS has supported the "Tamil Nadu" initiative in the context of its membership in the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles since 2017. In cooperation with local NGOs, this includes factory trainings to educate employees and management on employee rights and complaint mechanisms. The establishment of legally binding arbitration and complaints committees, especially for women workers, is also promoted. As part of the initiative, HUGO BOSS is committed to establishing a willingness for dialog and cooperation between all relevant groups involved in the textile industry in Tamil Nadu.

Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh (Accord):

HUGO BOSS signed the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh in 2016, in order to set a sign for the improvement of standards. In Bangladesh, the Company works with two local suppliers, both of which are covered by the Accord. Within this framework, they are audited and trained on fire and building safety and work continuously on their corrective measures. HUGO BOSS is in close contact with its suppliers as well as with the other producing brands in order to drive forward a continuous development process. The Company will pursue its commitment in the Accord and has therefore signed the “Transition Accord” which continues and extends the previous agreement.

Information on our commitment to chemicals management can be found in the section "Avoidance of hazardous substances". General information on all cooperations in which we are involved can be found in the area external collaboration.

HUGO BOSS environmental program

Through the HUGO BOSS Social Standards the Company also commits its business partners to comply with environmental standards and ensure transparency. Aside from compliance with local and national environmental regulations, HUGO BOSS requires its suppliers to be proactive at their locations in implementing environmental protection measures. To cooperate with our suppliers in mitigating environmental impact in the supply chain, we document data on environmental issues together with our partners.

The basis for documenting and improving environmental conditions in the supply chain is the environmental module of the Global Social Compliance Program (GSCP) of the Consumer Goods Forum. In cooperation with the GSCP and other environmental experts, we have further optimized the GSCP Open Source environmental program in the past years. This helps us to review standard minimum environmental protection requirements among our suppliers worldwide and further develop existing standards.

It is our goal that all our strategic finished goods suppliers are covered with GSCP environmental audits. In 2017, we also began to include suppliers with wet processes such as dyeing, washing or tanning in the GSCP environmental program. We focus in particular on this production step, since our comprehensive natural capital evaluation show that the environmental effects in these processes are particularly high.

Environmental audits

Within the framework of the GSCP environmental audits, HUGO BOSS commits its suppliers to provide environment-related information, for example:

  • Environmental management systems
  • Energy consumption
  • Greenhouse gas emissions
  • Water consumption
  • Waste water volume
  • Waste generation
  • Avoidance of hazardous substances

The goal is for all strategic finished goods suppliers (including our own production sites) to reach the GSCP Level 1 performance level by 2020 (this corresponds to the assessment level satisfying). More information is available in the HUGO BOSS Sustainability Report.

Avoidance of hazardous substances

The Company sees chemicals management as an important lever in further reducing the environmental impact in production. This applies to activities at our own production sites, but especially to upstream production processes at the supplier companies. In addition, the responsible use of chemicals is a prerequisite for creating the greatest possible safety for the customer. 

For this reason, all our partners are obliged to sign a guarantee declaration for compliance with the HUGO BOSS Restricted Substance List (RSL). With the HUGO BOSS RSL, the company sets specifications for the use of chemical substances in the manufacturing of textiles. Compliance with the RSL is ensured by regular product tests carried out in independent external laboratories.

> HUGO BOSS RSL in English

> HUGO BOSS RSL in Italian

> HUGO BOSS RSL in Chinese

For many years, HUGO BOSS has relied on industry-wide exchange and cooperated with other companies for a continuous further development in the area of chemicals management, e.g. as part of its membership in AFIRM (Apparel & Footwear International RSL Management Group). AFIRM's work focuses on defining an industry-wide RSL, exchanging best practices and defining common approaches to product safety. Since 2018, the HUGO BOSS RSL has fully met the requirements of AFIRM RSL.

HUGO BOSS has also been a contributor to the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) since 2017, thus supporting its “Roadmap to Zero Programme”. HUGO BOSS encourages its suppliers to use the tools provided by ZDHC to use alternative, environmentally friendly chemicals in production. The program is based on a Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (MRSL), which will be introduced in 2018 as part of all supplier contracts and in the relevant production processes at HUGO BOSS.

Within the framework of these memberships, HUGO BOSS works together with its partners on optimizing processes in wet-chemical processes, such as dyeing or tanning, in order to continuously reduce environmental pollution and protect water quality. For denim styles, for example, alternative dyeing processes are mainly used. These have lower water and energy consumption and significantly reduced use of chemicals, for example through the elimination of formaldehyde

HUGO BOSS slavery and human trafficking statement

HUGO BOSS rejects all kinds of forced labor, especially modern slavery and human trafficking. HUGO BOSS regularly audits direct suppliers and partners to verify their compliance with the prohibition of modern slavery and human trafficking in accordance with our Code of Conduct, our social standards and the United Kingdom Modern Slavery Act of 2015. The following statement should send a clear signal of the HUGO BOSS commitment against all kinds of forced labor and demonstrate that HUGO BOSS is a socially responsible and reliable company.


Employees can obtain support and advice on issues concerning legally correct conduct from their superiors or the Compliance Officer. HUGO BOSS has also established a global ombudsman system as a supplementary reporting channel. Employees and third parties such as suppliers (and their employees) or customers can confidentially notify the ombudsman, if there are indications of fraud, infringements of antitrust law or breaches of compliance guidelines. The ombudsman can also be contacted for concerns and complaints on human rights, social standards and labor conditions. It is also possible to remain anonymous if desired.

All HUGO BOSS employees also have access to additional information about the ombudsman system on the Company's intranet.

Dr. Carsten Thiel von Herff, LL.M.
External lawyer
Phone: +49 521 55 7 333 0
Mobile: + 49 151 58 23 03 21
Thiel von Herff Rechtsanwälte
Detmolder Straße 30
33604 Bielefeld

Form to submit indications

Employees, suppliers (and their employees) or customers can contact the HUGO BOSS ombudsman directly to hand in indications via the following website and the form provided in many languages.

Phone numbers

The HUGO BOSS ombudsman can also be contacted at any time and free of charge via the international phone numbers listed below. The additional involvement of professional translators overcomes possible language barriers.

In the Asian countries China, Hong Kong and Sri Lanka, HUGO BOSS has additionally set up its own phone numbers of HUGO BOSS trusted representatives (not the HUGO BOSS ombudsman) to receive information or complaints about violations at any time.

Austria: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Belgium: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Brazil: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Bulgaria: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Croatia: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Denmark: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN  

Egypt: 00800 00 09 571

France: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN  

Germany: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN  

Great Britain: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Greece: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Hungary: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Indonesia: 001 803 49 32 86  

Ireland: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN  

Italy: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN  

Malaysia: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Macedonia: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Netherlands: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Poland: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Portugal: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Rumania: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Serbia: 0800 19 10 46

Spain: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Switzerland: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Thailand: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Turkey: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

Ukraine: 00800 50 47 10

USA: 00800 66 28 37 626 / 00800 OMBUDSMAN

China: 0086 1350 0009 061      

Hong Kong: 0086 1350 0009 061  

Sri Lanka: 0086 1350 0009 061    


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