Sustainable Resource Use

Many of the instruments that the Yamaha Group produces, such as pianos and string, percussion, and wind instruments, are primarily made of wood. Large amounts of timber are also used when making electronic musical instruments, speakers, and soundproof rooms, due to the merits of wood in terms of acoustic performance, function, design, and texture.

Considering the diverse variety of timber used in its business operations, the Group established the Yamaha Group Timber Procurement Policy, which sets forth directives for timber usage in order to better conserve this precious resource and to ensure its availability for continued use in the future. The Group also established the Yamaha Supplier CSR Code of Conduct, which clearly stipulates points related to the harvesting and trading of timber resources that suppliers are requested to observe. This policy and code guide the Group in conducting sustainable procurement that is friendly to the environment and biodiversity and in fully utilizing timber, a highly renewable resource, without waste.

Breakdown of Timber Resources Used by the Yamaha Group by Origin (Fiscal 2022)

Breakdown of Timber Purchase Volumes by Location

[ image ] Breakdown of Timber Purchase Volumes by Location
Note: Figures exclude products that are not Yamaha brand or original equipment manufacturer (OEM)/original design manufacturer (ODM) products.

For details regarding specific volume figures, please refer to the Environmental Data page.

Timber Due Diligence

Sustainable use of timber requires consideration for forest conservation and for timber resource volumes. At the same time, it is crucial to contribute to community development through employment opportunities and infrastructure to sustain the economic viability of the supply chain. The Yamaha Group has established a due diligence system to prevent the procurement of timber from illegal sources, and promotes a strict confirmation process for the legality of timber harvesting through site visits and surveys of documents for procurement sources. In addition to environmental considerations, the Group is expanding the use of certified timber, which is produced in socially and economically sustainable forests and contributes to the advancement of the community.

The Group conducts surveys targeting all business partners from which timber was purchased to assess the place of origin, the legality of harvesting, and the sustainability of relevant resources. Based on the results, we perform stricter verification of legality for timber deemed to represent a high risk by undertaking further investigations including local site visits and assessments by a committee comprised of members of the Timber Procurement Division and the Sustainability Division. We confirmed that 99.4% (volume ratio) of procured timber was low risk in fiscal 2022. The Group conducts such surveys each year with the cooperation of suppliers and is aiming to achieve a 100% rate of low-risk timber procurement. Additionally, we are actively adopting certified timber. Certified timber constituted 52% of timber purchase in fiscal 2022 (by volume, compared with 48% in fiscal 2021). The Group was thereby able to realize the goal of achieving a 50% ratio of certified timber use over the three years leading up to fiscal 2022 set in the medium-term management plan announced in April 2019.

Ratio of Certified Timber Use
[ image ] Ratio of Certified Timber Use
Note: Figures are as of March of the respective fiscal year
Legality assessment meeting
Site visit

Cultivation of Quality Timber through Coordination with Local Communities (Tone Forest Activities)

The Yamaha Group uses a diverse variety of timber to produce musical instruments and other products. However, concerns regarding the sustainability of these resources have arisen in light of the recent declines in timber resource volume and quality. The Group aims to address these concerns through Tone Forest activities, which are being advanced through coordination with communities for the purpose of developing sustainable forests to ensure that high-quality timber suited to musical instrument production can be secured in a sustainable manner. We partner with government agencies and academic institutions to advance these activities around the world.

Initiatives in Tanzania (African Blackwood)

In fiscal 2016, Yamaha Corporation began investigating African blackwood (Dalbergia melanoxylon), an important material used for woodwind instruments. These investigations have been looking at matters such as ecology, resource stocks, and forest management status in Tanzania, where this tree is grown. The goal of these investigations is to help conserve this tree species while securing a stable procurement source. African blackwood is classified as near threatened by the Red List of Threatened Species, which is compiled by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, and a downward trend in the resource volume has been seen in recent years. As a result of investigating the management status of forests and the ecological status of these trees, including distribution, growth, and natural regeneration, we discovered that this resource can be maintained in a sustainable manner through proper forest management. Following these results, we undertook the development of a business model for realizing the sustainable use of this species as a material for musical instruments as a preparatory survey on a base of pyramid (BOP) business with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Taking place over the period spanning from 2016 to 2019, this process included the construction of a value chain for generating a cycle of forest preservation, instrument production, and community development, as we tackled the issues that arose in the pursuit of the quick development of said business model. Furthermore, in 2017 we began conducting regular African blackwood tree planting activities with the goal of fostering future forest resources. The scope of these activities is being expanded as we work together with local NGOs and community members to introduce tree planting and propagation techniques, and saplings cultivation, tree planting, and other forest management activities are becoming entrenched within communities as a result. Currently, three communities are taking part in these activities, and, in fiscal 2022, we planted approximately 4,500 seedlings, making for an aggregate total of around 12,000 saplings planted across an area of roughly 6.5 ha over five years of these activities. The growth status of the planted saplings has been monitored on a regular basis to collect fundamental data for fostering quality trees. In addition, Yamaha Corporation is conducting initiatives aimed at the effective use of existing resources, including procuring timber from forests that have been certified as being sustainably managed and developing elemental technologies for improving the usage efficiency of wood materials.

Forest survey
Saplings being raised in a farming village (photograph provided by Mpingo Conservation Development Initiative)
Environmental education initiative for local elementary school students (photograph provided by Mpingo Conservation Development Initiative)

Initiatives in Hokkaido (Sakhalin Spruce)

Kitami Mokuzai Co., Ltd., a Hokkaido-based company that manufactures piano soundboards, signed an agreement with the Okhotsk General Subprefectural Bureau and the town of Engaru, Monbetsu-gun, Hokkaido Prefecture in March 2016 under which these organizations have been working together to foster sustainable forests and expand the demand for Sakhalin spruce (Picea glehnii) plantation timber. These activities were expanded on in 2021 with the conclusion of a comprehensive cooperation agreement between Hokkaido Prefecture and Yamaha Corporation, which broadened the scope of these forestry activities to include the entirety of Hokkaido Prefecture. Yamaha has long used Hokkaido-grown Sakhalin spruce in its piano soundboards, but the recent decline in naturally grown timber has resulted in us changing to imported wood for the majority of our piano soundboards. Under the aforementioned agreement with Hokkaido Prefecture, we will take part in collaborative activities ranging from research to community events for promoting appropriate management, tree planting, and other forestry activities targeting Sakhalin spruce plantation timber, including those trees owned by the prefectural government, local governments, and Kitami Mokuzai.

In October 2021, we followed up on our activities in 2020 by once again holding a tree planning event at an Engaru Town Sakhalin spruce plantation. In this second iteration of this event, a group of approximately 80 people comprised of employees of Kitami Mokuzai and members of their families gathered to plant some 200 Sakhalin spruce saplings. Moreover, we used a FAZER R industrial-use unmanned helicopter that employs the forest measurement technologies of Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd., to perform laser measurements of the trees aged 15 to 25 years in Kitami Mokuzai’s Sakhalin spruce plantation. The data of the 35-ha plantation acquired from 80 m in the air was combined with tree and environmental data collected within the plantation to be used in basic research on long-term Sakhalin spruce cultivation. The measurement and related survey activities were featured in Vol. 2 (Nurturing Forests Rich in Sound) of Yamaha Motor’s Field-Born short SDG documentaries. We continue to transmit information about our activities through participation in the forestry initiatives of universities and local communities with the goals of ensuring a reliable supply of high-quality Sakhalin spruce for use in piano soundboards while also educating younger generations about the importance of forest resources.

Sakhalin spruce trees aged 25 years (Kitami Mokuzai plantation)
Governor of Hokkaido Naomichi Suzuki and Yamaha President Takuya Nakata at signing ceremony
Forest survey
Employees of Kitami Mokuzai and members of their families taking part in second tree planting event
Yamaha Motor FAZER R industrial-use unmanned helicopter

Environmental Considerations for Timber Resources in Product Creation

The Yamaha Group is proactively utilizing wood cultivated specifically for industrial purposes on planned plantations as well as certified wood, which is properly managed so that the lumbering process does not harm the forest or ecosystems. The goal of measures is to use the high-quality renewable resource of trees on a sustainable basis.

In addition, the Group focuses on developing alternative materials that accurately reproduce the superior sound quality of scarce wood materials best suited for instruments.

Resource Conservation in Products and Packaging

The Yamaha Group strives to use less resources in its products from a variety of standpoints, such as lowering product size and weight, integrating several products into one, and reducing sizes, and when possible completely eliminate product packaging and cushioning. Furthermore, the Group is also engaged in efforts that will ultimately lead to less use of resources, such as extending the lifespans of its products and developing its piano renewal business.

Utilization of Sustainable and Recyclable Materials

The Yamaha Group is developing alternative materials that can be substituted for scarce timber and adopting sustainable materials, such as biomass-derived resins, for use in its products. In addition, we use recycled polystyrene in portions of speaker boxes while incorporating recycled plastics into other products.

Effective Use of Timber Resources

The Yamaha Group is working to reduce losses by improving the yield ratio in timber processing while also reusing and recycling wood chips from production processes. The Company is using offcuts in other components and either using, selling, or disposing such offcuts as raw materials, fertilizer, or fuel. In recent years, the Company has also been conducting unique initiatives, such as using sawdust produced in the wood manufacturing process at Japanese factories that manufacture pianos as bedding for cows.

Timber offcuts previously disposed of as waste being repurposed as corner block (structural reinforcement materials inside guitar bodies)

Waste Reduction and Resource Recycling

The Yamaha Group has established systems for recovering and separating waste in order to reduce waste produced at factories and offices and promote recycling. Targets have been established with this regard as part of the Group’s environmental management system.

In Japan, the Group had a recycling rate of approximately 99% as of March 31, 2022.

Furthermore, regular on-site inspections of waste processing subcontractors are carried out to verify that waste is being processed appropriately as part of our efforts to fulfill our waste processing responsibilities.

Waste Reduction Initiatives
Office Details
Toyooka Factory The Company has introduced vacuum concentration equipment for liquid waste and reduced the amount of waste acids and waste alkali generated in the wind instrument manufacturing process by approximately 80%.
We process waste containing rare metals from the R&D Department as a valuable resource and make effective use of this resource.
The Company has introduced a liquid waste reduction CD dryer, taking the place of the decompression and concentration equipment, which contributed to an approximately 30% reduction in emissions of specified controlled industrial waste, such as waste acids and waste alkali.
Kakegawa Factory The Company has installed more wastewater processing equipment and begun the in-house processing of wastewater containing adhesive agents generated in the piano manufacturing process. These efforts have led to annual waste reductions of approximately 90 tons.
The Company has augmented its ability to process wastewater containing adhesive agents. These efforts have led to annual waste reductions of approximately 270 tons.
In 2021, the Company began using sawdust created through timber processing to produce cat litter and other items.
Kitami Mokuzai Co., Ltd. A liquid waste reduction CD dryer has been installed, resulting in a 50% reduction in emissions of wastewater, sludge, and other waste.
Xiaoshan Yamaha Musical Instruments Co., Ltd. The company has reduced paint process-related waste by keeping the circulating water used in the musical instrument painting booths clean to enable longer usage, which resulted in annual waste reductions of approximately 120 tons.
Yamaha Fine Technologies Co., Ltd. The company takes steps to cut down on car part rejects by reducing equipment defects and quality defects. The result was a 16% reduction in overall factory waste production coupled with energy and resource savings achieved through improved productivity.
CD dryer (Toyooka Factory)
CD dryer (Kitami Mokuzai)

For details regarding waste, please refer to the Environmental Data page.

Product and Packaging Recycling

The Yamaha Group complies with laws and ordinances related to recycling products and packaging in relevant countries and regions, including the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive of the European Union. In addition, we are promoting efficient use of resources in Japan by establishing locations for collecting used Electone™ products across the country to recover and recycle.

The Yamaha Group uses water to wash products and cool facilities. The Group evaluates water-related risks through comprehensive risk assessments conducted on a Groupwide basis as well as through surveys and water-related risk evaluation tools at all business sites. These measures are used to evaluate physical water stress, water quality, regulatory risks related to water resources, and reputational risks. In fiscal 2020, we began acquiring third-party verification for Groupwide water intake volumes to further improve management practices. The Group does not have large-scale production activities in areas where water resources are lacking, and we have therefore judged that our operations do not have a large impact on the environment through water intake. Furthermore, the Group requires high-transaction-value suppliers that use large amounts of water to provide reports describing water intake volume, the water-related risks they recognize, examples of damage, and other matters to maintain an understanding of water-related risks across the value chain.

Meanwhile, the plating and washing processes involved in wind instrument manufacturing use large volumes of water. Recognizing this fact, since the early 1970s the Group has been reusing cooling water, recycling wastewater from production processes using reverse osmosis membrane equipment, and implementing measures to prevent leakage in water-using facilities.

Water Usage*

  • * Water usage represents the total amount of groundwater intake and tap and industrial water purchases.
  • * The scope of calculation for greenhouse gas emission and water usage volumes encompasses the Yamaha Corporation headquarters and major production sites and resort facilities worldwide and accounts for more than 95% of all Yamaha Group sites.

For details regarding water usage and reuse, please refer to the Environmental Data page.

Resource Conservation and Recycling Initiatives

Xiaoshan Yamaha Musical Instruments

Xiaoshan Yamaha Musical Instruments Co., Ltd., which manufactures wind instruments and percussion instruments in China, has been reusing approximately 80% of wastewater for manufacturing processes since it installed a wastewater treatment facility that purifies wastewater to the level of pure water. (This facility has brought this company in compliance with legal provisions for the inspection and improvement of corporate pollution resulting from electroplating of Zhejiang Province.*)

In addition, Xiaoshan Yamaha Musical Instruments has adopted a cooling method that uses a circulating water supply to cool the annealing furnaces used for heat treating the copper tube components of wind instruments, resulting in annual reductions in water use of approximately 5,700 tons.

  • * Legislation passed in Zhejiang Province promotes environmental preservation in electroplating factories by requiring companies engaged in electroplating processes to conform to 56 items related to environmental preservation systems and equipment. Standards for metals such as copper and nickel are stricter than those for general factory wastewater
Wastewater treatment facility
Cooling unit using circulated water

Yamaha Musical Products Indonesia

Wind instrument manufacturer PT. Yamaha Musical Products Indonesia has introduced a wastewater treatment facility that enables the reuse of more than 60% of wastewater. Furthermore, wastewater treatment processes have been rationalized to reduce the use of chemicals.

In addition, Yamaha Musical Products Indonesia has installed equipment to allow cyclical reuse of the wash water used in recorder production processes. This equipment has reduced water use by approximately 12,000 tons per year. In 2019, such equipment was deployed for other processes, cutting water use by about an additional 1,300 tons.

Wastewater treatment facility

Hangzhou Yamaha Musical Instruments

In response to increasingly strict wastewater standards, piano and guitar manufacturer Hangzhou Yamaha Musical Instruments Co., Ltd., has installed a wastewater treatment facility capable of purifying wastewater to the point that it can be reused. The wastewater treated in this facility is used for cooling water and other applications, resulting in annual reductions in water use of roughly 10,000 tons.

Wastewater treatment facility
Reuse of wastewater for cooling water

Yamaha Music India

Yamaha Music India Pvt. Ltd., which completed construction in 2019, has introduced a completely closed wastewater treatment facility. Wastewater generated from the manufacturing process is 100% reused and is not emitted outside the factory.

Wastewater treatment facility
Reuse of 100% of manufacturing process wastewater

Yamaha Music Manufacturing Asia

PT. Yamaha Music Manufacturing Asia, a manufacturer of electronic instruments, installed reverse osmosis membrane equipment in 2019 to treat wastewater for reuse in the manufacturing process. In addition, it is conserving approximately 120,000 kWh of power a year by spraying mist on chillers to augment their cooling capabilities.

Reverse osmosis membrane equipment

Yamaha Musical Products Asia

At PT. Yamaha Musical Products Asia, which commenced production in fiscal 2021, we have introduced a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment facility designed for the purpose of reusing wastewater in manufacturing processes.

Wastewater treatment facility