About this guide

This guide provides clear steps to help you identify your value chain and advice on how to manage it effectively. It is suitable for both businesses that have already taken the first steps to creating a sustainable business and those who want to get started.

Since we published our Business Guide to a Sustainable Supply Chain in 2003 there has been a huge evolution in the way businesses consider sustainability issues and agencies have published a wide range of reports, papers, tools and templates to help businesses become more sustainable internally and across the value chain.

This guide aims to build on our original 2003 business guide, providing a common reference point for businesses and serving as a gateway to the pool of information and tools that exist to support value chain management.

This guide was developed within the SBC's Value Chain workstream, with leadership from Toyota New Zealand, Wellington Zoo, BNZ, thinkstep, Deloitte, DB Breweries and Ideas Shop and input from Air New Zealand, Caltex, New Zealand Post, O-I New Zealand, Opus, IAG, Westpac, Auckland Council and ecostore.

It includes case studies from Wellington Zoo, Toyota New Zealand, Ideas Shop and New Zealand Post and highlights examples of value chain action in New Zealand from ecostore, O-I New Zealand and BNZ.

Special thanks go to Michael Field, Jeska McNicol and Sam Bridgman for their specialist knowledge and input.

Using this guide

This Value Chain Guide is broken into a tool with six sequential sections and sections on collaboration, upstream and downstream in your value chain. Within the six step tool each section contains action points, some questions to help prompt your thinking, and resources to help you at each step of the way.


  • You can start at Step 1 and work your way through, or identify the step that is most relevant to your business's progress in this area and begin there.
  • This guide is designed to be relevant to a range of businesses, so not all the actions or questions to consider may be relevant to you.
  • Mapping and managing your value chain can, at times, be complex and labour intensive, and it is likely you will encounter some challenges. The process may require input from a number of divisions within your business, as well as stakeholders. At these times, you may wish to visit some of the external web pages suggested to get new ideas, read the case studies or enlist external expertise.