Environmental management systems

An environmental management system focuses on the organisation. Accordingly, it is highly appropriate to enquire about an environmental management system when procuring services and contracting work (such as painting services). However, as part of the quality assurance work, an environmental management system can also serve a purpose when procuring food products.


EMAS is a voluntary EU regulation for environmental control and environmental auditing in the aim of reducing a company’s environmental footprint. EMAS is based on the ISO 14001 requirements, but also include requirements for a transparent and reviewed environmental audit.

EMAS also entails taking more clearly into account the environmental footprint of sub-suppliers, meaning the roll of purchasers. The list of environmental aspects that are to be taken into consideration specifically includes the suppliers’ environmental footprint and the identification of significant environmental aspects in conjunction with the procurement process. This type of approach can be effective for both buyers and suppliers.

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ISO 14001

ISO 14001 is an international environmental management standard aimed at reducing a company’s environmental footprint. The standard does not include any absolute requirements or environmental performance metrics and can thus be applied to most types of organisations. The basic level for the ISO 14001 requirements is to prevent negative environmental effects and to comply with national legislation.

At the same time, the standard stipulates continuous work on achieving objectives and relentlessly pursuing improvements to the company’s environmental impact, as well as ensuring that the organisation governs and controls the environmental aspects that are deemed to have a major environmental impact.

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Svensk Miljöbas

Svensk Miljöbas is primarily geared toward smaller organisations that offer an alternative to EMAS and ISO 14001. Svensk Miljöbas is a national environmental management standard that aims to make it easier for small companies and other organisations that want to take a structured approach to environmental matters. It is based on the ISO 14001 standard. The association also aims to help small business market their environmental practices.

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