Resources management (water, energy, waste)

“In keeping with the spirit of craftsmanship, we manage natural resources responsibly and sparingly.”

Axel Dumas, Executive Chairman of Hermès


Thanks to its artisanal model and innovative spirit, Hermès is able to develop while maintaining a low energy footprint and low levels of water consumption and waste production. Managing this consumption, which is integral to the company’s ecological and economic responsibility towards the major issues the planet currently faces, is an objective shared by all the company’s divisions and métiers.

The Group policy is based on the following pillars:

  • Improving measurement of consumption in order to implement solutions for reduction;
  • Improving production processes by favouring the most economical technologies;
  • Innovating by making use of environmentally friendly solutions.


Environmental matters, in particular water, energy and waste, are overseen by the Sustainable Development Committee and, more specifically, by the member of the Executive Committee responsible for the upstream division, supported by a Deputy Managing Director in charge of industrial affairs and by the real estate development department. Each year, an analysis of the main challenges takes place and is shared with the Executive Committee. Material recycling is overseen by a group committee made up of members of the main entities concerned: leather goods, textiles, ready-to-wear and the commercial division.


Water for industrial use is mainly used in the tanneries and textile units. The Group consumes 580,253 m3 of water per year.


  • To decouple industrial water consumption from increased business activity.
  • To reduce water consumption by 5% per year (m3 per million euros of turnover, constant scope) over the period 2018 to 2023.
  • To implement a multi-stakeholder approach and co-build with external stakeholders (regional governments, authorities and professional associations).

Results 2020

  • Hermès received an A- rating from CDP for Water, illustrating the extent of the company’s efforts, in particular on an operational level.
  • A specific water risk analysis, using the Water Risk Filter tool and in partnership with the WWF France, is currently underway on the company’s production sites and those of its main suppliers.

Changes in industrial water consumption (m3)


Changes in industrial water consumption (m3)

In 2020, overall industrial water consumption decreased significantly (-13.2%) compared to 2019. This was the result of continued efforts to reduce water consumption, as well as the exceptional shutdown of most of our workshops during the first lockdown in France.

Over the past 10 years, the Group has maintained its ambition of decoupling water consumption from growth in activity, with industrial water consumption increasing by a factor of 1.7 and activity increasing by a factor of 2.25.

  • -25%

    reduction in water consumption intensity over 10 years (excluding farms)

  • -13%

    reduction in consumption of water for industrial use compared to 2019

  • 100%

    of the main métiers have at least one water recycling project

  • €1.4M

    of investment in the improvement of waste treatment facilities for tanneries

An inspiring initiative

The filtering gardens of Saint-Louis

The preservation of natural resources is part of the House’s DNA, and particularly for water, the presence of which determined the installation in 1586 of what would become the Cristalleries Saint-Louis. Today, the production unit is located in the heart of an exceptional territory recognised since 1989 as a cross-border biosphere reserve by UNESCO.


The filtering gardens of Saint-Louis


The group consumes 199,177 MWh of energy (electricity and gas) per year. The majority of the energy (74%) is consumed in industrial activity (cristallerie, tanneries, textiles, leather), while shops and service buildings account for 26% of the total.


  • To implement actions compatible with plans to limit global warming to 2°C and in particular continue to decouple water consumption from growth in activity.
  • To implement a 100% renewable energy policy within its own operations by 2030.
  • To no longer use gas or any other fossil fuel as an energy source for any new industrial investment, unless shown to be technically impossible.
  • By 2023, all shops will be 100% lit by LED lights, unless technically impossible.

Results 2020

Change in industrial energy consumption


Change in industrial energy consumption

In 2020, overall energy consumption decreased slightly compared to 2019 (-6.4%), thanks to the solutions implemented by industrial sites, but also because of the first lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Over the past 10 years, the group has maintained its ambition of decoupling industrial energy consumption from growth in activity, with industrial energy consumption growing by a factor of 1.32 compared to activity growing by a factor of 2.25.

Energy mix

In November 2015, Hermès decided to play an active role in the energy transition process. All its French sites are now supplied with 100% green electricity, from hydroelectric, solar and wind power sources. Worldwide, the group sourced more than 80% of its electricity from green sources in 2020.

Energy efficiency and optimisation

The most energy-efficient systems have been implemented on production sites, in service buildings and in shops, with insulation, lighting, energy management systems and a choice of energy sources.

The energy efficiency of industrial equipment has been improved by investing in more efficient equipment and reducing consumption by optimising operating parameters. For this reason, 80% of the Group’s shops are equipped with LED lighting.

  • -42%

    reduction in energy consumption intensity over 10 years (excluding farms)

  • -6%

    reduction in industrial energy consumption compared to 2019

  • 80%

    of shops lit with LEDs (worldwide)

  • 82%

    of electricity from renewable sources (worldwide)

  • 3

    Leather Goods workshops equivalents using own photovoltaic electricity production

An inspiring initiative


Hermès is building the first energy-positive Leather Goods workshop in Louviers (Normandy). The first stone of the production unit was laid in September 2020. This project to rehabilitate a brownfield site near the city centre will serve as a proof of concept for the Hermès group’s future Leather Goods workshops.

Inauguration of the Louviers' site


Waste management is a major factor in environmental protection and social responsibility. It requires each of the company’s different métiers to do everything possible to reduce waste production, recover waste or treat it.

The wide diversity of the métiers at Hermès is not conducive to a global policy, aside from the general principle of avoiding the production of waste and working on its end-of-life treatment. Waste management is therefore specifically managed by each industrial division through a dual policy of waste reduction and waste recovery where possible. The main contributors are tanneries, textiles, crystal, leather, perfume and real estate.


The House’s policy is based on two main levers:

Reducing waste production

  • Innovating across industrial or production management procedures, for example through “exactly enough” as opposed to “surplus” production;
  • Leading waste management training and awareness-raising activities, particularly for the offices;
  • Reducing the number of unsold items through bespoke commercial management: freedom of purchase for stores, replenishment flexibility and transfers between stores.


Waste recovery

  • Facilitating waste collection, and following a circular economy logic, internally and externally, as soon as possible;
  • Working on materials end-of-life through the best certified waste treatment channels;
  • No destruction of new products intended for sale, particularly for clothing, by 2022.

Results 2020

Distribution of ordinary industrial waste (OIW) by métier


Distribution of ordinary industrial waste (OIW) by métier

The management of ordinary industrial waste is specifically undertaken by each industrial division through a dual waste reduction and recovery policy when possible. The main contributors are tanneries and leather, given that leather goods and saddlery objects represent over half of the House’s business.

Distribution of hazardous industrial waste (HIW) by métier


Distribution of hazardous industrial waste (HIW) by métier

The House’s métiers do everything possible to reduce their production of hazardous industrial waste, to recover or process it. Producing 61% of its objects internally in our exclusive workshops, the main producers of hazardous industrial waste are therefore tanneries, alongside the crystal and textile divisions.

Reduction of industrial waste

  • -8%

    reduction in OIW intensity compared to 2019

  • -12%

    reduction in HIW intensity compared to 2019

  • 6,932

    tonnes of ordinary industrial waste
    (OIW) compared to 7,050 in 2019

  • 5,226

    tonnes of hazardous industrial waste (HIW) compared to 6,359 in 2019

Reduction of industrial waste in intensity

Reduction of industrial waste in intensity
  2018 2019 2020
OIW Intensity (t/M€) 1,26 1,18 1,08
Variation   -7% -8%
HIW Intensity (t/M€) 1,04 0,93 0,82
Variation   -10% -12%


Recycling of industrial waste

  • 43%

    of industrial waste is recycled (excluding energy recovery)

Reprocessing of industrial waste

  • 98%

    of waste recycled and recovered as a proportion of total leather waste tonnage

  • 100%

    of leather waste from production sites has been processed via approved channels

Recycling of non-industrial waste and awareness-raising among employees

All the House’s sites have introduced waste sorting systems.

All employees have received an eco-action booklet on the prevention of waste production or waste management.

More than 500 tonnes of waste have been recovered and recycled in the Ile-de-France region in 2020.

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Discover how the resources management takes part in our strategy "All artisans of our sustainable development".

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