At Croda we are monitoring and responding to the challenges created by Covid-19 (CoronaVirus) worldwide, safeguarding our colleagues while ensuring we are able to continue operating business as usual. Below are frequently asked questions that help explain our approach to ensuring business continuity:
Q1. Are Croda ingredients impacted by the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak?
A1. We currently have good stocks of raw materials across all our sites, our customer orders have not been impacted and we do not foresee any problems in the near future. However, we will contact and work closely with customers should shortages or logistics complexity affect any deliveries in the weeks ahead.
Q2. Are your finished products manufactured in areas affected by Covid-19 safe for use?
A2. We do not believe there is a need for concern on this point. Currently, there is limited information about Covid-19 but similar Corona viruses are known to be deactivated by any of the following conditions:
- Heat treatment at 65°C
- Alkaline conditions pH>12
- Acidic conditions pH<3
- Exposure to formalin or glutaraldehyde
For a majority of our products, our manufacturing conditions will meet at least one of these conditions, and our application of Good Manufacturing Practice controls should also minimise any post manufacturing risks. Advice from the World Health Organisation states that Coronavirus cannot live on surfaces for long periods of time, so surfaces of packages received from areas affected by Covid-19 should also be safe.
Q3. What impact will there be on orders due to Covid-19?
A3. To enable our customer care teams to respond swiftly to the most recent information surrounding the Covid-19 outbreak, we are keeping up to date with local developments and are in touch with our customers and local authorities regularly. We will manage any potential impact to orders through our established shortage of supply process. This means that we will contact customers directly if their supply may be impacted rather than completing individual questionnaires.
The situation surrounding the outbreak of Covid-19 is rapidly changing and it is resulting in challenges for organisations across the world. As per our usual procedures, we will work with our customers and notify them of any delivery impact in a timely manner.
Q4. Are your manufacturing sites and offices in regions affected by the virus operating?
A4. Our manufacturing sites, offices and labs are working, subject to any local restrictions. Where necessary, we have implemented additional measures to ensure the safety of our colleagues and continue our high levels of customer service. We have reviewed our business continuity plans and have developed specific plans as appropriate. We are complying with all local safety standards as a minimum, and exceeding these as we think appropriate.
Q5. Will there be a shortage of your raw materials as a result of Covid-19?
A5. We currently have stock of raw materials at all our manufacturing sites. Our global supply chain teams are working to identify any potential impact on our raw material supplies and are putting plans in place to help ensure continued supply. We have completed an initial review of our supply chains and will monitor these as the situation develops, putting contingency plans in place as required. We have thorough business continuity plans that can be put in place should they be needed.
Q6. What are you doing to safeguard your teams?
A6. We have put in place additional measures to protect all our employees and help minimise the spread of the virus. These include, where possible, enabling employees to work from home, implementing split team working as well as encouraging increased hygiene measures. We are complying with all local safety standards as a minimum and exceeding these as we think appropriate.
Q7. Do you have contingency plans in place should the impact of the virus continue to escalate?
A7. We have established Group and Regional Covid-19 Teams to oversee our response to the virus and our contingency planning. These teams are:
- actively monitoring disease progression in each country, WHO guidance, supplier and supply chain risks and prevention and containment measures;
- communicating best practices for safeguarding colleague health and ensuring that anyone displaying symptoms follows local guidance for seeking treatment and self-isolation;
- testing business contingency plans and building stock to ensure that we can maintain supply and delivery;
- restricting colleague travel and mandating that anyone who has travelled to, or through, restricted countries must self-isolate for 14 days;
- making the most of our existing video conference facilities, so that colleagues can easily continue their work from home or other sites, as necessary; and
- ensuring our sales teams have the latest information so that they can respond to customer enquiries regarding ingredients.
Q8. How will you respond if the impact of the virus escalates?
A8. In line with our contingency plans and guided by our Group and Regional Covid-19 Teams, we have a variety of options available to us to help safeguard our colleagues and continue operations.
The use of these measures will be on a case-by-case basis, as either pro-active measures to protect employees and continue business operations as normal, or in response to the local situation. They include the possibility of increasing the proportion of employees working remotely, introducing more split team working and reorganising shift patterns; for example, to minimise the opportunity of spreading the virus while maintaining our levels of service. We also have dual sources of some key raw materials and alternatives available should that be necessary. As the outbreak has progressed, we have also been continually reviewing raw material and stock levels, and relocating products as needed.