Firms to test products' impacts

9th April 2013


Related Topics

Related tags

  • Minimisation ,
  • Management ,
  • Procurement ,
  • Reporting ,
  • Supply chain

Author

IEMA

The Co-operative, Nestlé and Sainsbury's are to initiate trials aimed at improving the environmental performance of products

The publication of research looking at the greenhouse-gas (GHG), waste, water, energy and resource impacts of traditional grocery goods throughout their life cycles has signalled the start of trials by the Co-operative, Nestlé and Sainsbury’s to improve the environmental performance of some of their products.

The three companies will pilot projects known as “pathfinders”, to target their efforts where many of the biggest environmental savings can be achieved.

The decision to launch the trials follows research from the Product Sustainability Forum (PSF) – a collaboration of more than 80 organisations, including grocery and home improvement retailers, suppliers, representatives from NGOs and the UK government – which identified the groups of products with the greatest potential environmental impacts.

It is estimated that, together, these “top 50” product groups comprise about 80% of the GHG emissions associated with the production, transportation and selling of all grocery products consumed in the UK.

The Co-operative and Nestlé will look at waste prevention and resource-efficiency measures across their potato, milk and chocolate supply chains, while Sainsbury’s will focus its activity on its meat, fish, and poultry products as well as fresh produce.

“This [project] will allow us to identify areas where we can make environmental savings while still delivering great quality products,” commented Iain Ferguson, environment manager at the Co-operative.

Liz Goodwin, CEO at Wrap, which published the PSF report and is coordinating the pilots, said: “By gaining a better understanding of the products that matter in the context of UK consumption, we can help businesses to prioritise their efforts to improve the environmental performance of their products in areas that will generate the biggest economic and environmental savings.”

The PSF research examined product life-cycle data from more than 150 published studies as well as from members. Wrap plans to adopt a similar methodology to review the electrical and home improvement markets.

Subscribe

Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.


Transform articles

Four in five shoppers willing to pay ‘sustainability premium’

Despite cost-of-living concerns, four-fifths of shoppers are willing to pay more for sustainably produced or sourced goods, a global survey has found.

16th May 2024

Read more

Each person in the UK throws a shocking 35 items of unwanted clothes and textiles into general waste every year on average, according to a new report from WRAP.

2nd May 2024

Read more

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Around 20% of the plastic recycled is polypropylene, but the diversity of products it protects has prevented safe reprocessing back into food packaging. Until now. David Burrows reports

3rd April 2024

Read more

A hangover from EU legislation, requirements on the need for consideration of nutrient neutrality for developments on many protected sites in England were nearly removed from the planning system in 2023.

2nd April 2024

Read more

Campaign group Wild Justice has accused the UK government of trying to relax pollution rules for housebuilders “through the backdoor”.

14th February 2024

Read more

Stella Consonni reports on the existing legal framework and the main challenges

15th January 2024

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close