International Unitar - SDG Pioneer Certificate

28 October 2020

On the 27th of October, Elicio was granted the certificate of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) as one of the first companies in Belgium. This is an international recognition for sustainable entrepreneurship based on the 17 sustainable development objectives of the United Nations.


"A great achievement for our organisation! Sustainable entrepreneurship has always been important to Elicio," says Joeri Vanbelle, Sustainability Manager at Elicio. "And every year we go the extra mile.”




Some actions are, for example, transitioning towards a plastic free world, by changing small things in our daily lives at the office. As from May, we stopped purchasing of straws and small plastic milk for the coffee, caps are collected, each staff member was given a reusable water bottle during the Wind-days and in cooperation with the supplier of lunches the packaging is reused.

Our initiative to use coffee grit in the vegetable and herb garden is along the same idea of reusing waste. After all, coffee grit contains a lot of nitrogen and is therefore ideal for fertilising the vegetable garden and houseplants. 

Not only are we a driving force behind green energy, we are also continuing to investigate how our own energy consumption can be optimised within our own business operations. Joeri: "We researched the tap water system, adapted the lighting regime and worked together with CO2Logic on a CO2 calculation”.




During Voka's audit in June, Elicio received the most praise for his attention to social commitment and our broad health policy. Recent actions are: getting rid of the soft drinks vending machine, offering vegetable soup, the forgotten meeting room is now used as a fitness room and we organise a weekly joint jogging event on Thursdays in Belgium, to end the year in beauty with a sporting performance on the Christmas run in Bruges, were we will be running for a good cause. 

The animal lovers among the staff were also heard. The free space outside was partly set up as a dog kennel, so that during the day the pets can go with their owners. This action even received an honourable mention during the voka event.




With the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), formally adopted by the UN in the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, UNITAR aims to provide governments and organisations with a compass for sustainable entrepreneurship. The goals were signed by no less than 194 countries worldwide.

The SDGs cover three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social and environmental. They can be divided into five major themes: people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership. In Belgium, only companies that have carried out actions for all 17 SDGs and have received the Voka Sustainable Business Charter for at least three years in a row have a chance of winning the UNITAR certificate.