ICE Pharma Has Launched its Sustainability Report

About ICE Pharma 
ICE Pharma is the bile acids expert, proving biliary acid derivatives as active pharmaceutical ingredients, excipients and finished dosage forms to the pharmaceutical industry. The company was  founded in 1949 as a family-run business in Reggio Emilia, Italy, and has grown into an international group with manufacturing sites in four continents and customers in over 50 countries. ICE Pharma is a world leader in the manufacturing of Ursodeoxycholic Acid (UDCA). 

ICE Pharma offers unrivalled scientific expertise and production capability in the development and manufacture of bile acids for human medicines. Its products fulfill an increasingly important societal and healthcare need by enabling the transformation of bile, a natural by-product of the food industry, into essential drugs that treat millions of patients worldwide.  

ICE Pharma is at the forefront of biliary acid research, at its five R&D centers and through long-term strategic partnerships with pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions. To support the continuously expanding understanding of the role of bile acids in human biology and their use as medicines, the company has developed a library of over 500 bile acid molecules as potential treatments for a wide range of unmet medical needs, including liver and neurological diseases.  

ICE Pharma’s approach to sustainability 
During 2022, ICE Pharma developed a long-term sustainability strategy and a short-term roadmap that will guide its actions for the next three years. ICE describes the strategic choices that will define its way forward and the progress it is making against its roadmap within its Sustainability Report. 

ICE Pharma has set clear targets along four strategic pillars, supported by strong environmental, social, and governance (ESG) implementation and leadership. These pillars cover essential aspects of ESG within the company’s value chain, influencing its ability to create value for its stakeholders. 

In 2022, the company carried out a research and benchmarking exercise to fully understand the ESG landscape of the industry. Among other activities, ICE Pharma also undertook an assessment of emerging ESG regulation and engaged in dialogue with internal decision-makers and key customers to understand the material issues of highest importance to them, now and for the coming years. ICE also consulted with external professionals to help the company prioritize its strategic pillars, set targets, and develop its sustainability roadmap. 

Agostino Barazza, Chief Executive Officer of ICE Group, said: “We believe that global collaboration and effective communication are the enablers of value generation. Our ambition is to build on our legacy, to advance our business, and, ultimately, our industry, to make a positive impact on the health of society. That is why we are strengthening our commitment by addressing Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) impacts across our business.” 

In its report, ICE Pharma set out a new strategy centered around four priority areas with clear targets and commitments: 

Fighting illness through product innovation 
ICE Pharma’s ambition is to build on its legacy of more than 70 years of experience to drive product continuity and sustainability by developing new drugs to address unmet medical needs, led by investment in biliary acid research and innovation. 

At the same time, the company is looking to become less reliant on animal by-products and to reduce its chemicals and energy resources in production. 

Product continuity: 

  • Commit at least 50% of R&D investments to initiatives that drive product continuity and sustainability each year, including alternative ingredients and processes with a lower environmental impact. 
  • Engage a minimum of two customers per research initiative addressing product sustainability. 

Impact on the healthcare industry: 

  • Introduce one new molecule as a lead candidate for pre-clinical studies every two years. 

Accelerating sustainable operations 
ICE Pharma’s aim is to accelerate its efforts to become more sustainable in its operations, minimizing its impact on the planet and increasing energy efficiency through strong processes, continuous improvement, and strategic investments. 

For several years, ICE Pharma has been tracking its greenhouse gas emissions along with other key environmental metrics, and has taken steps to reduce their impact, including the installation of highly efficient modern technologies, continuous improvement initiatives, and material investments. 

Now, the company is in the process of formalizing its approach to manage its climate impact in line with the Science Based Targets initiative’s methodology for target setting, and developing a more comprehensive calculation of emissions and other environmental impacts. 

Climate change: 

  • Develop a greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions target in line with the Science Based Targets initiative in 2023. 
  • 100% of all operational sites covered by ISO 14001 – Environmental Management system by 2023. 
  • 90% of total Group energy consumption covered by ISO 50001 certification by 2023. 
  • 70% renewable electricity consumption by 2025. 
  • 100% renewable electricity consumption by 2030. 

Building strong relationships  
ICE Pharma’s ambition is to build on the close connection it has with its suppliers within its global network, by advancing its ethics and standards through trust, transparency, and responsible business practices. 

The company has built its collection network, becoming the primary utilizer of available bile from across the globe and earning customers’ trust and mutual respect as an essential partner. 

Now, ICE Pharma is taking steps to work with its suppliers to create a structured approach to further mitigate risk and secure the resilience of its supply chain. 

Supply-chain management and transparency: 

  • Ensure suppliers constituting 80% of their spend on bile and other materials are covered by their Responsible Supply Chain Management program by 2027. 

Caring for people 
ICE Pharma’s ambition is to promote inclusive decision-making and a caring culture. 

The company wants to create a workplace where employees can reach their full potential, thrive, and grow in a safe environment. 

ICE Pharma is committed to caring for its people, investing in their training and development, as well as their health and safety. ICE Pharma focuses on recruiting without prejudice while respecting and promoting diversity. 

Employee development and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I): 

  • Invest in training and development, providing employees with the right skills to achieve their full potential.  
  • Promote diversity in the workforce by embedding diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) policy into the recruitment practices and ensuring they are inclusive and free from discrimination.  
  • Ensure regular monitoring and reporting of human capital data to evaluate efforts toward employee development and adequate work environment.