When the demand for cheap labor and the dynamics of production in informal, unregulated markets is poorly managed, it creates a fertile territory for modern slavery to grow.

The introduction of new laws like the Modern Slavery Act in 2015 is making companies sit up and take notice of their supply chain more than they ever have done before.

Ensuring compliance through a clear and aligned code of conduct and an ethical procurement policy is a responsibility that can no longer be ignored.

In terms of supply chain management, all organizations subject to the UK Modern Slavery Act and similar legislation that exists worldwide need to ensure that they have accurate risk assessments and controls to determine where their supply chains could be exposed to products developed using any form of forced labour, including child labour. This should include appropriate due diligence as part of the vendor management process, to determine the risk that goods could be produced by slave labour given the jurisdiction where goods are produced, as well as the type of industry and the company's labour practices.

By displaying the Freedom Seal, businesses have an easy way to clearly communicate to consumers they care about social responsibility, and are actively taking steps to prevent forced labor and human trafficking.

Displaying the Freedom Seal Mark means:

- That you have independent endorsement of your efforts to keep your supply chain free from forced labor

- That you are taking action that is compliant with the latest regulations and standards

- That your reputation is not at risk

- That your customers will stay loyal

- That you can avoid unpleasant consequences like fines for non-compliance

Do you want to gain market entry? In some markets, including the US, addressing modern slavery is a federal requirement of companies bidding for contracts or benefiting from trade agreements.