Ms. Maho Takahashi, a Campaign Planning Manager for Lush Japan, gave a talk to the EAP 2 students on July 8th, 2016 about social responsibility and ethics in business. In her presentation she discussed her role at Lush and how the company operates, particularly focusing on what they do in terms of their own social responsibility.
Ms. Takahashi started out by introducing the history of the company and the kind of products they sell. She explained that Lush is against animal testing and that to ensure its products are not tested on animals; it uses organic fruit and vegetables. It also manages the whole supply chain, buying ingredients directly from producers, which allows Lush to trace how the ingredients are made. Moreover, it enables Lush to check that suppliers also share the same mission as Lush itself, which includes: not testing on animals, protecting the human rights of those who make the Lush ingredients and protecting the environment.
Next, Ms. Takahashi explained a little more about specific campaigns at Lush. One of Lush’s recent campaigns highlighted diversity and respect for others in terms of sexual identity, which campaigned for equal rights for both employees and consumers regardless of sexual orientation. To coincide with their campaign Lush sold soap advocating, “＃GAYISOK”, using soap as an avenue to spread its campaign message. Following this, Ms. Takahashi showed a Lush campaign video on how Lush ingredients are sourced; explain
ing how it strives to protect human rights and the environment, while also seeking advice from permaculture specialists on how to match community needs with Lush products to regenerate communities.
Finally, Ms. Takahashi concluded her presentation by encouraging students to look at the story of a product when making purchasing decisions. She also pointed out that as consumers, students have the power to change businesses, to ensure a more ethical and responsible society. To finish students were given the opportunity to ask Ms. Takahashi questions. Students actively asked questions and were able to better understand the importance of corporate social responsibility for businesses.
Article by Haruka Sunagawa (2nd Year Student)
Photos by Herbert Donovan