Homebase reports 83% year on year increase in the sales of slug deterrents in the past 3 months

Milton Keynes, UK, 2014-7-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — A record number of slugs are chopping their way through areas of Britain, new figures have revealed.

Brits certainly aren’t sluggish when it comes to slug prevention. In the past 3 months, Homebase has seen an 83 per cent year on year increase in the sales of slug deterrents as gardeners rushed to the shops to gather armoury to protect their plants.

Millions of pounds worth of flowers and vegetables have been destroyed, because the comparatively warm wet winter weather has sent slug populations soaring, says retailer Homebase.

The South of England is the hardest hit, followed by West London and then Kent.

But for the first time, British gardeners are turning to more environmentally friendly ways of controlling them, sales figures show.

Sales of copper tape which can be fixed around plant pots have soared 400 per cent year on year in the last three months. Gravel barriers around prized plants can also help keep the ravenous raiders at bay, as slugs hate crawling across dry uneven ground.

Bird food continues to be a firm favourite, with people looking to attract blackbirds, thrushes, robins and starlings to the garden as a natural deterrent.

Homebase garden buyer Heidi Towse said: “While gardeners may still regard slugs as their greatest enemy, they also recognise that they are part of a balanced environment – helping to breakdown organic matter.

“Nevertheless, seeing months of hard work gobbled up in a single night can be heart-breaking.”

Hostas, begonias and delphiniums are just some of the wide range of plants which slugs and snails can devour in a matter of hours.

Vegetables, herbs and even fruit are also a slug’s gourmet meals, with their huge appetite destroying tender growth quicker than it can grow.

With a nursery-reared young plant costing, on average of 50 pence each, the bill for a slug’s night time feasts can be enormous.

The top five most affected areas are:

  • Sussex & Surrey
  • West London
  • SE London & Kent
  • South Central
  • South Wales & West


Note to News Editors:For more information contact, Media Relations, tel: 0845 120 4365, email: media.relations@homebase.co.uk

For all the latest news and images visit www.homeretailgroup.com/news-and-media

Follow us on twitter @Homebase_PR

About Homebase:
Homebase is a leading home enhancement retailer selling around 38,000 products for the home and garden. It has 322 large, out-of-town stores throughout the UK and Republic of Ireland serving around 60 million customers a year, and a growing internet offering at www.homebase.co.uk. In the financial year to February 2014, Homebase sales were £1.5 billion and it employed some 18,000 people across the business.

Homebase is part of Home Retail Group, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer.


IKEA to release its new 2015 IKEA U.S. catalog this August

New Catalog Includes Inspiration for Making the Most of Your Bedroom and Bathroom

CONSHOHOCKEN, PA, 2014-7-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — IKEA announced today that the new 2015 IKEA U.S. catalog, filled with design inspiration and new products for every area of the home, will be available to the public starting this August. Themed “Where the Everyday Begins and Ends,” this year’s catalog highlights the two important rooms where people sleep and get ready every morning and night – the bedroom and the bathroom. Readers will learn how IKEA can help them make the beginning and end of their days more comfortable, more calm, and more organized by designing their spaces based on their own routines, utilizing smart space solutions, and expressing their personal styles.To gain a better understanding of how the start of the day impacts a person’s well-being, IKEA recently released its first global Life at Home Report. The report, which includes an interactive “Data Mixing Board,” took a deep look at people’s morning routines from waking up to walking out the door, and how their morning habits impact their days.

“Everyone goes to sleep and wakes up, but everything in between those moments is very personal. We all have individual needs when it comes to our morning and evening routines,” says Patty Lobell, Sales Manager, IKEA U.S. “IKEA understands how people live and we use that knowledge to create solutions to help you make the most of your personal spaces so you can make the most of you.”

Bedrooms and bathrooms are places to refresh and recharge. The bathroom is a personal retreat but often also a small shared area. In fact, 70% of Americans share their bathroom with a spouse or partner*. IKEA can help make the most of the limited space you have by providing space-saving products that grab every square inch and clear out the clutter. In addition, IKEA offers soft and cozy textiles that help create a relaxing, spa-like feel. The bedroom is your comfort zone, where you can relax and recharge. People cite their biggest challenge in the bedroom as a lack of space or insufficient storage**. IKEA has well-organized storage solutions that help you find your things quickly and easily, leaving you with more time to spend with the kids or have that extra cup of coffee. And, since a good day starts with a good night’s sleep, you can customize your sleep experience with IKEA products that that meet your needs for warmth, support, and softness.

The 2015 catalog will be available in 67 printed editions, 32 languages and 46 countries/territories. The IKEA catalog is now the largest print production ever to be printed on 100% FSC® (Forest Stewardship Council) certified paper. The entire IKEA catalog production chain, from forest to printer, is FSC-certified to ensure a more sustainable origin of the wood.

U.S. consumers can access the new catalog in multiple ways:

  • Printed Version – Request a printed copy of the catalog atwww.getmy2015catalog.com.
  • Digital Version – Visit www.2015digitalcatalog.com to view the digital version of the catalog online beginning on July 24. New for this year, user will also be able to save lists of their favorite products from the digital catalog and create shopping lists.
  • Catalog App for smartphones and tablets (iOS and Android) – Download from your app store beginning on July 24. The app gives users access to extended catalog content by scanning designated pages of the printed catalog. The extended content includes: an augmented reality “Place in Your Room” feature which allows users to virtually place and view nearly 300 IKEA products in their own homes; shareable videos featuring quick DIY tips and stories behind IKEA products; 360º views that allow users to look all the way around a whole room; and image galleries. Select content will also be available in the digital catalog.

Fans can connect with IKEA on Pinterest (https://pinterest.com/IKEAUSA), Twitter (@DesignbyIKEA) and on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/IKEAUSA). Join the conversation via the hashtag #IKEACatalog.

*Source: IKEA U.S. Consumer Panel – Life in the Home: Bathrooms, November 2013
**Source: IKEA U.S. Consumer Panel Bedroom Report, June 2013

NOTE FOR PRESS: Please visit our press site at IKEA-USA.com/2015catalog for downloadable press information on the catalog, hi-res product images, videos and additional materials. Also available at the site is a press preview of the digital catalog via a link to a beta version. Contact IKEARequests@Ketchum.com for additional information, product loans or images.

About IKEA
Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered home furnishings of good designand function at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currentlymore than 350 IKEA stores in 44 countries, including 38 in the U.S. IKEA incorporatessustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and theenvironment. For more information see IKEA-USA.com, @IKEAUSANews, @DesignByIKEA orIKEAUSA on Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and Pinterest.

Press Contact: Kathy Boerner

Biffa and Sainsbury’s celebrate innovative facility that lets Sainsbury’s Cannock store to run on power generated solely from the supermarket’s own food waste

LONDON, 2014-7-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Industry partners Biffa and Sainsbury’s are today celebrating an innovative facility that will allow Sainsbury’s Cannock store to run on power generated solely from the supermarket’s own food waste.

Using Biffa’s advanced anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities and a unique power link up, Sainsbury’s Cannock store will be powered using electricity generated using food waste from Sainsbury’s stores across the UK.

This ground-breaking project helps to close the loop on food recycling and Sainsbury’s to continue to send zero operational waste to landfill.

How it works

  • Sainsbury’s send zero operational waste to landfill. Any food waste that is unsuitable for charitable donations or animal feed is sent to anaerobic digestion at Biffa to be converted to energy
  • This remaining food waste is collected from Sainsbury’s supermarkets around the UK using Sainsbury’s delivery lorries. It is returned to Biffa’s plant in Cannock
  • The food waste is turned into bio-methane gas, which is then used to generate electricity at the Biffa plant
  • Electricity for Sainsbury’s Cannock store is directly supplied to the supermarket via a newly constructed new 1.5km long electricity cable
  • The new power supply – built in partnership with Biffa – means the Cannock store will come off the National Grid for day to day electricity consumption
  • Sainsbury’s is already the UK’s largest retail user of anaerobic digestion, generating enough energy to power 2,500 homes each year

Notes to editors

Sainsbury’s zero waste to landfill

In June 2013, Sainsbury’s achieved its 20×20 sustainability target of putting all its store waste to positive use – and diverting it from landfill.

All general waste from stores is recycled or turned into fuel. Surplus food that can’t be used by our charity partners to feed vulnerable people is now processed into animal feed to support British farmers or used to generate energy through anaerobic digestion.

Sainsbury’s is already the UK’s largest retail user of anaerobic digestion, generating enough energy to power 2,500 homes each year.

Biffa’s Anaerobic Digestion technology

Biffa’s Poplars site in Staffordshire is the largest operational AD plant in the UK dealing with source segregated food waste. The facility is licensed to process 120,000 tonnes of food waste per annum, and is supported by a fleet of specialist vehicles collecting food waste from large and small customers nationwide.

Biffa is one of the leading waste management companies in the UK, employing nearly 6,000 people and collecting 2.6m tonnes of Industrial and Commercial waste every year. Biffa now produces a range of renewable energy types at 41 of its UK sites.


Biffa and Sainsbury’s celebrate innovative facility that lets Sainsbury’s Cannock store to run on power generated solely from the supermarket’s own food waste

Biffa and Sainsbury’s celebrate innovative facility that lets Sainsbury’s Cannock store to run on power generated solely from the supermarket’s own food waste

Sainsbury’s announces £200 million corporate ‘green’ loan to invest in on-going carbon reduction and sustainability projects

LONDON, 2014-7-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Sainsbury’s today announces it has agreed a £200 million corporate ‘green’ loan to invest in on-going carbon reduction and sustainability projects. Whilst Green Bonds are now increasingly issued by institutions to support environmental and sustainable initiatives, this is the first time that a commercial loan has been structured to do the same.

The creation of a ‘green’ loan, a conventional corporate loan underpinned with clear environmental commitments, ensures that Sainsbury’s will use the loan proceeds for environmental, sustainability and water-related projects.

The structure of the loan is consistent with the Green Bond Principles 2014, the guidelines developed by a leading group of bond underwriters and endorsed by environmental groups to provide a clear framework for this emerging asset class for the benefit of investors and issuers.

Lloyds and Rabobank acted as Joint Green Arrangers and Rabobank acted as Sole Mandated Lead Arranger. The loan has been accredited ‘Green’ by Sustainalytics, a leading independent provider of environmental, social and governance (ESG) research, analysis and support services.

John Rogers, Chief Financial Officer of Sainsbury’s said: “This £200 million Green loan – which is the first of its kind in the UK – demonstrates our commitment and leadership in carbon reduction and sustainability, and shows the value we attach to environmental improvements as demonstrated by our award winning Project Graphite programme.

We have a proud record in reducing the environmental impact of our operations by investing in low and zero carbon technologies and energy efficiency programmes – for example, our current absolute electricity use in supermarkets is over 12% lower than in 2007/08, despite around 35% growth in floor space.

Project Graphite is focused on improving energy efficiency in our existing stores and investing in onsite renewable energy, and it includes measures such as replacing traditional light bulbs in our estate with energy efficient LED lighting, producing renewable heat from ground source heat pumps and biomass boilers plus installing photovoltaic solar panels on roofs and petrol stations.

The green loan will be used to fund clean energy generation, energy efficiency and water saving projects over a period of two to three years. It will be independently measured and monitored by a third party to evaluate its use and its positive environmental impact, and we will publish progress on the various green investments and carbon emission savings on our corporate website.”

Jan van Nieuwenhuizen, Member of the Executive Board of Rabobank, said:“Sustainability is an essential element in Rabobank’s strategy. We understand the challenges faced by our Food and Agribusiness clients and are constantly evolving our products to meet their ambitions. This green deal is a first of its kind and further emphasises how we collaborate with our clients to meet our joint sustainability aspirations. We are thrilled that Sainsbury’s chose Rabobank to help them invest in a more sustainable future for their business.”

James Garvey, Managing Director, Head of Capital Markets and Portfolio Management at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “As an organisation, Lloyds Bank is committed to responsible business. We have supported several companies bringing green bonds to market and earlier this month issued our own Environment, Social and Governance bond. We are delighted to have utilised this expertise working with Sainsbury’s to create the first green loan and look forward to this market developing further.”


Sainsbury’s announces £200 million corporate ‘green’ loan to invest in on-going carbon reduction and sustainability projects

Sainsbury’s announces £200 million corporate ‘green’ loan to invest in on-going carbon reduction and sustainability projects

The Association for Retail Technology Standards announced the release of the Compliance Audit Interchange

Partnership with Fair Factories Clearinghouse Seeks to Improve Audit Efficiency for Stakeholders

WASHINGTON, 2014-7-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Association for Retail Technology Standards, the standards and technology division of the National Retail Federation, today announced the release of the Compliance Audit Interchange, a specification that allows organizations to share compliance audit results securely with other companies who source from the same supplier location.

“Uncoordinated auditing by so many brands, retailers and other stakeholders that manage compliance databases has resulted in audit fatigue,” said NRF Vice President of Retail Technologies Tom Litchford. “There is evidence that some suppliers are audited as much as 50 times a year, consuming time that would be better used to bring about sustainable improvements to processes and operations. CAI tries to make it easier for participating compliance databases to exchange audit information, reducing the need for so many different companies to audit the same suppliers.”

“Forward-thinking brands and retailers have developed comprehensive corporate social responsibility programs that include inspecting and monitoring outsourced factories, and many of these companies have joined various multi-stakeholder groups to work with other brands and retailers to help create sustainable improvements in outsourced factory practices,” said CAI work team chair and Executive Director, Fair Factories Clearinghouse Peter Burrows. “By allowing databases to exchange audit information, CAI lets companies that source the same suppliers have a deeper understanding of what is going on at the supplier. The more complete a picture of what is happening on the ground, the greater the progress that can be made to bring about sustainable improvements.”

Included in the standard is a set of defined XML standard messages to enable brands and retailers to track and to communicate with their manufacturers and other supply chain intermediates about compliance with human rights, environmental and supply chain security issues. It also defines the means where brands, retailers and audit companies can confidentially and securely exchange audit information with other companies and external databases. Technical reports offering in-depth discussions of the compliance audit landscape and the need for standards, as well as a design specification for the registry itself, are also included.

ARTS and FFC were supported in this project by many retailers, brands, suppliers and multi-stakeholder organizations, such as Nike, adidas, El Corte Inglés, Cisco, Enablon, Intertek, SIM Supply Chain Information Management, the Fair Labor Association, SEDEX, BSCI, GS1, GSCP and SIF.

The Association for Retail Technology Standards, a division of the National Retail Federation, provides the retail industry with the latest research and best practices through specialized technology standards, developments and educational programming. ARTS standards, products and programs are dedicated to fostering innovation and supporting the retail community by providing a more efficient retailer-to-consumer relationship. Through collaboration and partnerships, ARTS enhances retailers and their business partners’ ability to conduct business globally.  www.nrf.com

Kathy Grannis
(202) 783-7971
(855) NRF-Press