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Monday, 15 October 2007

Greener grocers

The National consumer Council's report on supermarkets' environmental performance was released today, and has seen M&S and Sainsbury's join Waitrose as the highest performers, achieving a 'B' ranking. 
The scale:
C=showing potential
D=room for improvement
The ratings:
Waitrose, Marks and Spencer, Sainsbury's = B
Asda, Tesco =C Co-op, 
Morrisons, Somerfield = D 
The ratings system looks at four areas: reducing CO2 emissions, action on waste, sustainable fish and sustainable farming. i was, I must confess, surprised to find Co-op so low on the scale. Apparently, they fall down on sustainable fish and farming. Marks and Spencers perform poorly on UK in-season produce (interestingly, Somerfield scored highest for this), and energy-saving lightbulbs. Does this last one really deserve to play such a large role in the survey? I wonder where initiatives such as the new M&S eco-stores come in? (Yes, M&S have won me over with their marketing - how could they not be coming top of everything???0What such a report does make me consider is the effectiveness of a 'tick box' comparison of enterprises which are dealing with this issue in very different but inventive ways. Equally, it suggests the hygiene measures for supermarkets may be higher than they currently assume. Should uk produce and energy efficient lightbulbs just be a given?Hope fully we'll see a few 'A's next year. 
A sideline: apparently, the food we eat is responsible for 31 per cent of the average European household’s impact on climate change. Hmmm....

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