Compliance Committee

Our Compliance Committee, established in 2000, is composed of independent outside experts. This committee regularly meets with directors of Yakult Honsha to discuss such themes as the compliance promotion situation of each department. Members provide wide-ranging opinions and recommendations related to overall corporate activities from the perspective of compliance, as well as practical advice regarding the theme of each meeting. In fiscal 2022, the committee met in September to discuss the status of accounts and finances as well as the Company’s corporate governance, and again in February to discuss the status of our Production Control Department and Logistics Control Department.

Corporate Ethics Committee

Our Corporate Ethics Committee, established in 2002, is primarily composed of independent outside experts. This committee convenes regularly for checking on the implementation status of our corporate ethics activities (such as refusing to engage with organized crime groups). Through oversight by committee members, we work on ensuring sound management. In fiscal 2022, this committee held a meeting in November.

Internal reporting system

We set up the Yakult Compliance Hotline in 2006 as an internal reporting system for quickly discovering and correcting any violations of laws and internal rules during the execution of business.
Through this system, we accept reports, consultations and other feedback from directors and employees (including those who have stepped down or retired within the past year) at Yakult Honsha, Group companies and associations. Additionally, since fiscal 2022 we have expanded the scope of this system so that it can also be used by marketing companies other than Group companies. We have established internal and external (consulting law office) contacts to operate this hotline, and have ensured the protection of whistleblowers through Internal Reporting Regulations that assure the confidentiality of reported information and prohibit the adverse treatment of whistleblowers. We conduct periodic compliance surveys every three years to verify the level of awareness of this internal reporting system within the Group. According to the results of our most recent survey in fiscal 2020, awareness of the system itself is at 94.0%, while awareness of how to actually use it is at 70.4%. We are striving to ensure this system’s effectiveness both by providing feedback on the state of awareness to management at the Company and Group companies that have implemented this system, and by working to raise awareness and educate eligible persons about this system and how to use it. Upon receipt of an internal report, the Compliance Promotion Team investigates the facts, and if the Team determines that there is an issue, the respondent and their superiors are ordered to correct it and take measures to prevent recurrence. Employees are informed about this system during training for new employees and level-specific training. We also gather feedback from workers via the aforementioned compliance surveys. In Group companies outside Japan, we have established internal reporting systems at 12 business sites.