Core Principles

Core Principles

A set of Core Principles form the centerpiece of the Accountability Framework. These principles lay out both the scope of strong company commitments and key practices essential to fulfilling them.

Read a summary of the Core Principles below, or download a complete draft of the Core Principles document:

Environmental and Social Scope

Elements of a strong company commitment on key environmental and social topics:

A – Protect ecosystems

Supply chains are deforestation-free and protective of other natural ecosystems

B – Respect human rights

Supply chains respect human rights, including rights of indigenous peoples and local communities and workers’ rights

C – Other sustainability topics

Companies analyze need for additional sustainability commitments

D – Specification of commitments

Commitments apply broadly across operations, are time-bound and verifiable, and are based on common terminology

Implementation and Monitoring

Key practices and procedures to fulfill commitments and credibly demonstrate results:

1 – Company systems

Establish processes & procedures that effectively facilitate implementation of commitments

2 – Traceability

Control origins of materials in supply chains sufficiently to demonstrate compliance or determine improvement needs, including risk assessment and supply chain mapping

3 – Supplier management

Institute supplier management systems to fulfill commitments across the full supply base

4 – Land use

Conduct or support responsible practices in land acquisition, land use planning, and site development

5 – Land management

Conduct or support effective land management and long-term protection to safeguard forests, natural ecosystems and human rights

6 – Remedy & remediation

Remedy past social and environmental harms, including violation of commitments

7 – External relations

Conduct business and engage with stakeholders in an ethical manner to help protect the environment and respect human rights

8 – Monitoring & verification

Conduct regular monitoring against time-bound targets and improvement plans, and provide independent verification

9 – Reporting & disclosure

Report progress regularly, using common definitions and good practices to convey precise information on performance and progress

To review the complete Core Principles document:


Companies, government, civil society and other stakeholders are encouraged to provide input and help shape the Framework’s further development:

Next Up

Review and download the Framework’s Operational Guidance: