Outokumpu wins ISSF Sustainability Award

| Source: Outokumpu Oyj

May 15, 2014 at 3.30 pm EET

A long-term study by Outokumpu’s Chief Medical Officer Markku Huvinen received the Sustainability Award by ISSF (International Stainless Steel Forum) at the ISSF Annual General Meeting in Rome, Italy today, May 15. This is second sustainability award received by Outokumpu, the first one came in 2011 for reducing landfill waste in Sheffield, UK.   

While stainless steel has been manufactured for over a hundred years, there has not been any published scientific studies on for example exposure to dusts containing chromium and nickel in the stainless steel industry before the studies made by Outokumpu. Markku Huvinen has studied occupational health of Outokumpu’s employees in the Tornio stainless steel mill and Kemi mine for 30 years. The study shows that there is no added risk of cancer to individuals working in steel mills and living nearby.

The study assessed the risk of cancer, especially cancers of the lung and nose, among the employees in Kemi and Tornio since the start of the production in 1967 until 2011. Results show no evidence for higher cancer rates among the employees. The overall cancer incidence of Outokumpu employees was similar to the general population, and the lung cancer rates were actually lower. 

Says Outokumpu CEO Mika Seitovirta: “We are extremely proud of this recognition given by ISSF to Markku’s study. Markku been a pioneer to study occupational health in our industry and his work is a foundation to Outokumpu’s continued efforts to ensure our employee’s health also in the future. Safety comes first in all our operations – we want our employees to return home safely at the end of their working day. Outokumpu is the leading company in sustainability in our industry, and various organizations have recognized our long-term work.”

Says Markku Huvinen: “This recognition by ISSF means a lot to me after many years of work. My studies began when I started as doctor at Outokumpu in 1970s, and one of the ferrochrome smelter workers came to my office, blew his nose and asked me, ‘What does this dust do to my health?’ It was a legitimate concern. I am glad that Outokumpu had the foresight to take this seriously and that our employees made it possible– this study has been a common effort of the employer and employees.”

British Medical Journal published the article on the study by Markku Huvinen in November 2013. Read the entire article online

For more information:

Saara Tahvanainen, tel. +358 40 589 0223

Outokumpu Group

Outokumpu is the global leader in stainless steel. We create advanced materials that are efficient, long lasting and recyclable – thus building a world that lasts forever. Stainless steel, invented a century ago, is an ideal material to create lasting solutions in demanding applications from cutlery to bridges, energy and medical equipment: it is 100% recyclable, corrosion-resistant, maintenance-free, durable and hygienic. Outokumpu employs more than 12 000 professionals in more than 30 countries, with headquarters in Espoo, Finland and shares listed in the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki. www.outokumpu.com