Supply Chain Responsibility

​Our Goal​
To work with diverse, high-quality suppliers to innovate and address societal issues within the supply chain. We work with suppliers to set clear expectations, monitor compliance and address societal concerns where we have a voice.​
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​Our Goal​
To work with diverse, high-quality suppliers to innovate and address societal issues within the supply chain. We work with suppliers to set clear expectations, monitor compliance and address societal concerns where we have a voice.​
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  Blue Right
  Green Right
  Red Right
  Orange Right
  Green Right
​Just before the sun begins to rise, Todd Glover checks the tobacco his workers picked from one of his many tobacco fields in Wilson, NC.
Curing tobacco is more science than art, he says. Making sure there’s just enough moisture in the tobacco at the right time, and conversely, that the tobacco has been dried out at the perfect moment, makes a difference in tobacco quality. And for Todd, delivering the highest quality tobacco for Philip Morris USA is important.
Our companies work hard to develop strong, sustainable supply chains by partnering with thousands of suppliers from farmers, like Todd, to manufactures. Our suppliers deliver high-quality goods and services, manage business risk and find innovative solutions to tough issues. Open dialogue, shared expectations and honest feedback contribute to these strong relationships – some dating back decades.
We promote a strong culture of compliance and equip our employees to exercise sound business judgment when selecting suppliers. We work with suppliers who respect workers' rights, reduce costs and their environmental impact, and comply with our contracts and laws. Employees receive communications and training on topics such as antitrust, anti-bribery/anti-corruption and third-party vendor management.
Our supply chain management approach includes​:​
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Develop a Diverse Supplier Base​
​Supplier diversity contributes to our companies' success by generating new ideas, promoting different perspectives and providing a competitive advantage. We work with diverse suppliers, including minority, women, veteran and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender-owned (LGBT) businesses. For many years, we've supported organizations including the National Minority Supplier Development Council and the Women's Business Enterprise National Council​ to increase business opportunities for their members. We expanded our support in 2017 as a corporate sponsor of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce.​
​​Communicating Our Expectations​
​We communicate expectations for our suppliers through Altria's Supplier Code of Conduct​, Tobacco Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Supplemental Guidelines and our contracts. Our Supplier Code of Conduct applies to all of our suppliers and addresses compliance with applicable laws, regulations and standards. The Code covers topics such as non-discrimination, child and forced labor​, environmental compliance and workplace safety. The Tobacco GAP Program Supplemental Guidelines, communicated to our over 2,000 tobacco growers in 2017 through direct mail, handouts and one-on-one conversations, highlight our expectations on topics like using registered farm labor contractors and respecting their worker’s rights to join or not join a union.
Assessing Supplier Performance and Requiring Suppliers to Remediate Findings​
​Our monitoring programs assess our suppliers' compliance with our expectations and contracts. These programs encourage continuous improvement, help identify areas for greater focus, and if needed, remediation. Altria's tobacco companies conduct third-party audits of direct packaging and product materials suppliers, international leaf suppliers and contract manufacturers where there's significant country risk, supplier criticality, brand risk and where we can improve supply chain compliance.
Engaging with Stakeholders​
​We engage with our suppliers and other stakeholders to monitor and address opportunities and concerns within our supply chain. For our tobacco businesses, we work directly with growers, regulatory agencies, agricultural stakeholders and working groups like the Farm Labor Practices Group and GAP Connections to help growers, farm labor contractors and farmworkers better understand and comply with labor laws and regulations.​​
​Other​ Topics of Interest:
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Communicating With Growers
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Communicating With Growers
American tobacco is the backbone of our products. A secure supply of domestic tobacco is important to our business. We purchase tobacco from several thousand farmers, and we need enough amounts of the right types and grades of tobacco to make our products. 

Our Tobacco Leaders Program encourages consistent, high-quality tobacco, innovation, efficiency and open communications between us and our growers.

We enhance the Tobacco Leaders Program terms and conditions annually to reflect new business needs while establishing standards that promote sustainable agriculture.​
Progress
  • 2000
    Philip Morris USA launched a direct-contracting program, now known as the Tobacco Leaders Program.
  • 2004
    PM USA formally launched its Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) program.
  • 2008
    PM USA created a grower scorecard to communicate grower performance on contractual requirements.
  • 2008
    PM USA established a company grower representative team to build stronger relationships between the company and contracted growers.
  • 2010
    Altria and its companies created and published a Supplier Code of Conduct.
  • 2012
    Altria's tobacco companies worked with others to develop the U.S. Tobacco GAP Handbook.
  • 2013
    PM USA supported the development of GAP Connections, which provides governance and oversight of the U.S. Tobacco GAP Handbo​ok and related grower education programs.
  • 2015
    Altria required GAP training for growers including the prevention of Green Tobacco Sickness​ and heat stress. Also, Altria supported programs to provide this training to workers.​​
Human Rights Framework
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Human Rights Framework
Respect for people is fundamental to the way we conduct business.


  • respect the rights of our employees and establish a culture of respect and compliance as articulated by our Values and the Altria Code of Conduct;
  • work with suppliers to promote actions that are consistent with our Values and the Supplier Code of Conduct​; and
  • collaborate with others to address human rights issues where our companies have a role to play.

Child & Forced Labor
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Child & Forced Labor
​Altria's companies are committed to tackling concerns about child labor in tobacco farming. We don’t condone the unlawful employment of children, nor do we condone forced labor.

Although Altria's tobacco companies don’t own or operate tobacco farms, we respect human rights within our supply chain. Our companies discuss their expectations with suppliers and require them to accept responsibility for their labor practices. Our grower contracts establish a minimum employment age at 16 years with limited exceptions granted based on local, state and federal laws.

Green Tobacco Sickness
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Green Tobacco Sickness
When working in tobacco fields, it's possible for farmers and their workers to come in contact with wet tobacco. If workers are not properly protected, they can become sick if the nicotine in the tobacco plant is absorbed through the skin, a condition known as Green Tobacco Sickness (GTS). Our contracts require growers to follow the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s recommended practices for preventing GTS, including making available recommended personal protective equipment (PPE).