Basic Approach

The Toppan Group regards human rights as a paramount principle in engaging in business activities and sustainability initiatives.

The Group operates business under the foundational concept of respect for human beings. To ensure this foundational concept, Toppan calls for respect for human rights as the first principle of the behavioral norms set under the Conduct Guidelines for Toppan personnel. The guideline stipulations include protecting individual dignity, prohibiting discrimination and harassment, and prohibiting child labor and forced labor.

Toppan formulated a Groupwide human rights policy in October 2021 as a foundation for the management of human rights risks of any kind.

Supporting the Principles of Human Rights Manifested in the United Nations Global Compact

Toppan has been participating in the United Nations Global Compact and therefore supporting its six principles on labour and human rights since 2006.

  • Human Rights

    Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and

    Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.


    Principle 3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;

    Principle 4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour;

    Principle 5: the effective abolition of child labour; and

    Principle 6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.

  • Environment

    Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;

    Principle 8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and

    Principle 9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.


    Principle 10: Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.

Promotion Framework

Toppan has established a framework for promoting human rights efforts across the Group led by the Corporate ESG Project, a cross-divisional team driving sustainability activities under the Sustainability Promotion Committee, which is chaired by the President & Representative Director. The Board of Directors supervises our human rights efforts and the manager in charge of the Personnel & Labor Relations Division is responsible for their implementation. Day-to-day efforts related to human rights are led by the Personnel & Labor Relations Division, the Manufacturing Management Division, and the Legal Affairs Division, in collaboration with related departments throughout the Toppan Group.

Human Rights Due Diligence

Toppan supports the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and recognizes the importance of human rights due diligence. We formulated the Toppan Group Human Rights Policy in October 2021. We have analyzed and assessed human rights risks in our industry and identified five specific human rights risks. We participated in the Global Compact Network Japan’s Working Group on Human Rights Due Diligence in fiscal 2021 in order to advance the establishment of our management system for human rights due diligence. Through the working group, we have been able to speak to companies at the forefront of human rights initiatives. In fiscal 2022, we plan to mitigate and remedy human rights risks, centered on the five risks identified, through surveys and interviews with Toppan’s stakeholders and those of the Group.

Human rights issues and identification of human rights risks at Toppan

Human rights issue Toppan employees Supply chain Customers Users Local communities
Forced labor / Human trafficking Medium High
Child labor Low Low
Discrimination High High
Inhumane treatment Medium High
Freedom of association / Right to collective
Low High
Working hours Low High
Wages Low High
Right to privacy High High High High
Ethical/responsible marketing Low Low
Freedom of expression High Medium
AI and human rights Low Low
Product safety and quality Low Low
Health of local residents Medium
Sanitation of soil, water, etc. Medium
Rights of indigenous peoples Low

*In consideration of the characteristics of Toppan’s business, competitor trends, and international human rights standards, we have organized and evaluated human rights issues based on an assessment of the level of importance of human rights risks. As a result, we have identified human rights risks at Toppan to be the four shown in red above and “human rights governance across the Group."

Grievance Mechanism

If it becomes clear that the business activities of the Toppan Group have caused or contributed to negative human rights impacts, we will work to remedy the issue through appropriate means. Where negative human rights impacts are directly linked to our business activities by business relationships, we will work with relevant stakeholders to fulfill our role in remediation. The Toppan Group has in place the Toppan Group Helpline as an internal reporting system to be used by employees in the event of a matter arising in relation to infringement of human rights. We also operate the Supplier Hotline, through which clients, customers, suppliers, subcontractors, and vendors can anonymously report such matters.

Human Rights Training and Harassment Prevention

Toppan conducts diverse human rights training based on a fundamental ethos of “respect for human beings.” We have implemented human rights training focused on harassment prevention for new managers and supervisors for some time, but after concluding an agreement on harassment prevention with the Toppan Printing Labour Union in April 2020, we have conducted training on preventing harassment in the workplace for all employees. If harassment occurs, we conduct an appropriate investigation, including interviews with related parties, and strive to resolve the matter promptly through such measures as corrective or disciplinary action against persons responsible for harassment.

Understanding of human rights issues is enhanced by presenting related case studies as part of efforts to raise awareness by Conduct Guidelines Promotion Leaders assigned to each workplace.

In recent years we have provided training to all employees on diversity and inclusion, an issue which is garnering considerable attention. We have also invited external experts to lead webinars on various themes as part of broad-ranging awareness-raising activities.

In fiscal 2021 we ran e-learning courses for all employees of Toppan and selected Group companies on the Toppan Group Human Rights Policy and recent social trends concerning human rights. We plan to conduct training across the entire Toppan Group in fiscal 2022.

Labor-Management Initiatives for Human Rights

Toppan’s labor union and management undertake various measures for labor-related human rights based on a fundamental policy stated in a collective labor agreement.

The Toppan Printing Labour Union and Toppan’s management have concluded the collective labor agreement in order to ensure stable labor-management relations, maintain and improve working conditions, and secure the corporate concord. This agreement sets forth a fundamental policy between labor and management, the rules governing union activities and labor-management negotiations, and employment conditions such as wages and working hours.

The Toppan Printing Labour Union is run by members from Toppan and seven Group companies. The union and the management have concluded an agreement to impose a uniform set of liability-related clauses (rules governing union activities and labor-management negotiations) on all eight companies represented.

Fundamental Policy under the Collective Labor Agreement

As a fundamental policy between labor and management, Article 1 of the collective labor agreement, the General Principles, stipulates that the Company and union shall contribute to society through business operations and collectively work for the benefit of the Company and long-term stability of the livelihood of employees. Labor and management both uphold this policy as a common goal. Article 2 of the agreement clearly states that the union has all the rights established by law, specifying that the Company shall respect the union’s rights to organize and collectively bargain and act.

Appropriate Working Conditions

Toppan convenes labor-management committees every month to discuss working hours and related measures for each operational site and takes measures to check and ameliorate cases of chronic or sustained long working hours. We work to reduce overtime work through a range of measures, including sending alerts to employees and their superiors via the work management system, setting office lighting to turn off at specified times, and configuring PCs to shut down automatically. Adapting to the new normal, we strive to ensure appropriate working conditions that support the autonomy of individual employees on all fronts by introducing “smart work” and “remote work” systems and providing them with smart devices that can be used in the same way inside and outside of office environments.

Occupational Safety and Health

Safety masters, safety personnel, employees in charge of engineering and safety, and other safety experts have been deployed to Toppan Group sites across Japan to strengthen safety promotion systems. In accordance with the Basic Policy on Safety, Health, and Fire Protection, which states that safety takes priority over all other considerations, we organize various types of safety training for all employees of the Group, including both regular and contract employees. This includes comprehensive training for forepersons and risk assessment to enhance the intrinsic safety of equipment. Our Anzen Dojo safety-training facilities are equipped with devices that simulate workplace hazards to reinforce employees understanding and awareness of them. We have strengthened the Toppan Group’s safety activities by opening five Anzen Dojo facilities in Japan, which have provided training to a cumulative total of 37,750 people as we continue efforts to prevent accidents. Toppan also works with industrial physicians and the Toppan Group Health Insurance Union to drive fundamental prevention of mental health problems and create workplaces that do the same.

Diversity & Inclusion

Toppan positions diversity and inclusion (D&I) initiatives as an important management strategy to further advance its progress as a corporation that creates social value. We facilitate ongoing dialogue and promote awareness to ensure mutual respect and create psychologically safe workplaces where every person can speak and act with dignity and without inhibition. We provide support for employees balancing work with childcare or nursing care, promote the employment of people with disabilities, and take positive action to advance the role of women. These measures are driving increases in the percentage of persons with disabilities in the workforce and the number of female managers and supervisors. We also implement various LGBTQ-related activities to ensure that every employee is mindful of ensuring inclusive environments in which every participant can feel at ease. In addition to holding LGBTQ seminars open to employees across the Group, we have launched the TOPPAN ALLY initiative, and introduced a system to enable benefits for employees’ spouses to be extended to same-sex and common-law partners.

Open Recruitment Environment

Toppan recruits university and high school graduates, mid-career personnel, and persons with disabilities regardless of nationality, gender, age, or disability. We hire diverse human assets and use company presentations, websites, and other media to provide information on working at Toppan to a broad range of people.

We have produced a recruitment manual and provide training to employees who conduct interviews to ensure compliance and fair recruitment and selection practices. The manual sets out a list of questions that are inappropriate in an interview setting to ensure that interviewers avoid questions that could constitute employment discrimination. We also take comprehensive measures to protect applicants’ human rights in recruitment, such as by requiring interviewers to sign written pledges regarding the handling of personal information.

Proper Operation of Technical Internship Programs

In fiscal 2021 we conducted a survey on human rights risks for foreign technical interns working at the Toppan Group. Specifically, a fact-finding exercise was conducted in collaboration with local general affairs staff. An original check sheet was created to confirm such matters as whether internship programs are being run in accordance with stipulated requirements and whether there are any issues with working or living conditions. The survey identified that technical internship programs are used at 11 plants of three manufacturing subsidiaries.

We confirmed that the conclusion of employment contracts is explained in the native language of foreign interns or in a language that they can understand, that there were no cases of unpaid wages or long overtime hours being worked, and that appropriate wages are paid in accordance with hours worked. Interns were also provided with living conditions equivalent to those provided to Toppan employees. Going forward, we will confirm the status of technical internship programs across our supply chains and implement ongoing measures to ensure the proper operation of such programs.

Payment of Appropriate Wages

Toppan pays appropriate wages to employees in accordance with minimum wages stipulated in the laws and regulations of each country and based on local living costs. In addition to providing monetary compensation and welfare and benefits as provided by laws and regulations, we also give consideration to non-monetary compensation, such as support from the company for enhanced job satisfaction, self-actualization, and career development. The average annual salary at Toppan Inc. in fiscal 2020 was 6.75 million yen. The compensation system for determining employee wages is based on capabilities and roles and includes no differences based on gender. Compensation is also determined based on similar regulations at Toppan Group companies in Japan. Going forward, we will eliminate seniority-oriented elements from personnel treatment systems as we aim to create a compensation structure more focused on the individual capabilities and roles of employees.

Comparison of compensation of male and female employees of Toppan Inc.
Fiscal 2020 Basic salary (female : male) Total compensation (female : male)
Managers 1:1.03 1:1.03
Non-managers 1:1.13 1:1.31

The same salary system is applied to both male and female employees. Differences arise due to differences in the distribution of ages and grades.
*The average age of female employees is 35.9, while that of male employees is 44.8.

Toppan has also been taking measures to avoid human rights violations that might adversely affect the lives of people living near Group sites in the course of business. For example, Toppan promotes environmental conservation initiatives based on The Toppan Group Declaration on the Global Environment and the Basic Policy on Biodiversity.