Sainsbury’s Chief Executive Mike Coupe: We approached the half-way point in our 20×20 Sustainability Plan

LONDON, 2016-01-13 — /EPR Retail News/ — We’ve updated our sustainability strategy and we’re helping Swadlincote make food waste history.

  • Lucy Bronze, one of the stars of the England Women’s Football World Cup squad, was named as an ambassador for Sainsbury’s Active Kids. Lucy will join existing ambassadors Daniel Sturridge, Ellie Simmonds and Jonnie Peacock to help inspire more children to be active and stay healthy.
  • We extended our British lamb season for our 950 sheep farmers until at least the end of January 2016, making it five weeks longer than the 2014/15 season.
  • Swadlincote, South Derbyshire was named as the winner of our Waste less, Save moretown challenge and will receive £1 million to help the community reduce their food waste, with the best ideas shared to make a difference on a national scale.
  • We launched our 2015 Christmas campaign featuring Mog’s Christmas Calamity. The profits from the exclusive Mog’s Christmas Calamity book and toy totalled more than £1.5m. On behalf of Sainsbury’s, Judith Kerr and HarperCollins children’s books the profits from these sales will be donated to support Save the Children’s work to improve child literacy in the UK.
  • Launched a new initiative where each manager at Sainsbury’s will become a mentor in 2016 for at least one up-and-coming female colleague who has the potential and desire to progress her career.

Mike Coupe, Chief Executive, said: “Our annual Corporate Responsibility update is always an important time for us as we reflect on the progress we’ve made against each of our sustainability commitments. With the launch of our new business strategy in 2014, and as we approached the half-way point in our 20×20 Sustainability Plan, we took the opportunity to review our plans. Our updated Sainsbury’s Sustainability Plan reflects the world we’re living in today and we’ve amended some commitments, removed those that are no longer relevant and added new ones to make sure we continue to challenge ourselves to have the most positive impact.

One of the most exciting developments is our new commitment to invest £10 million over five years to help customers reduce their household waste, through our Waste less, Save more initiative. We know food waste is an important priority for our customers, with the average household throwing away £700 worth of food a year. Our initiative began with 189 towns across the UK applying to receive a £1 million investment in 2016 and we were delighted to announce that Swadlincote in South Derbyshire won the opportunity to be our pilot town.

We’ll spend a year testing a whole range of ideas and innovations in Swadlincote to find out what has the biggest impact on reducing food waste. Then we’ll focus on sharing the best ideas and making a difference on a national scale.”

Other hightlights from the quarter include

1. Living healthier lives

  • Active Kids: Lucy Bronze, one of the stars of the England Women’s Football World Cup squad, was named the new ambassador for Sainsbury’s Active Kids in October 2015. The Manchester City and England defender joins existing ambassadors Daniel Sturridge, Ellie Simmonds and Jonnie Peacock to help inspire more children to be active and stay healthy. 34,000 schools and clubs across the UK benefited from our 2015 scheme, and our 2016 voucher collection period launches on 27th January 2016.
  • Healthier baskets: We’re using new reformulated pepperoni in our fresh thin and crispy pepperoni pizza. We expect that this will remove 3 tonnes of fat over the year (based on previous sales data). This saving has been made by rebalancing the recipe of the pepperoni we use for our fresh pizzas, while still delivering a classic pepperoni flavour.
  • Allergies and intolerances: We’ve continued to work closely with the Allergy Academyby supporting activities including their Kitchen Workshops, with the second 2015 workshop held in December.
    Rachel De Boer, Specialist Paediatric Allergy Dietitian and Allergy Academy Course Director said: “The continued support that Sainsbury’s provides means we can run workshops such as the Allergy Academy Kitchen Workshop, which highlights the day-to-day challenges faced by people with food allergies and their families, and provides practical advice for dietitians to learn how these challenges can be overcome.”

2. Sourcing with integrity

  • Sainsbury’s Sustainability Standard: We have our first Sainsbury’s Sustainability Standard being used to address the environmental, social and economic impact of our key raw materials. Our Farmed Prawn Standard works across our prawn farmers in Thailand, and spans environmental factors including water quality through to social impact, worker welfare and the productivity levels of the businesses.
  • British lamb: For the 2015/16 season, we’ve committed to extend the British lamb season for our 950 sheep farmers until at least January 2016 making it five weeks longer than the 2014/15 season. We’ve worked around when availability and quality for the typical British lamb season would significantly decline. This helps to make the most of the increased availability of stock this season while reassuring our farmers affected by low prices. This adds to the lamb on our meat counter and in our Taste the Difference and Organic ranges, which is 100 per cent British all year around.
  • Agriculture apprentices: We’ve extended our apprenticeship scheme building on our Horticultural programme launched last year. In October, six agriculture apprentices started work within our poultry and livestock supply chains. All 13 apprentices are working towards a City & Guilds Level 2 Diploma.
  • Greenpeace tuna league table: Our tinned tuna appeared as one of the top brands in the annual league table ahead of 8 other retailers and brands. We were awarded a leading position for our 100 per cent pole-and-line caught tuna position and other strong sustainability policies. This adds to our launch of the first Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified tuna sandwich in 2014 and being awarded UK Supermarket of the Year 2015 by the MSC for the second year running.

3. Respect for our environment

  • Waste less, Save more: We announced that Swadlincote, South Derbyshire was selected to become our Waste less, Save more town for 2016. Swadlincote will benefit from £1 million investment throughout the year to help us find out what ideas are most effective in reducing household food waste. We’ll be trying and testing many things including technology, school projects and community events and plan to share what we learn with communities across the UK. 
  • Refrigeration: We’re field testing a new natural refrigerant gas, R-452A, in our transport fridges that has 45 per cent less Global Warming Potential (GWP) than our existing refrigerant (R-404A gas). We already know it has the same cooling capacity, fuel efficiency, reliability and refrigerant charge (the replenishment of gases from leaks) as R-404A gas. During the trial it will be in 10 of our refrigerated vehicles, if it proves successful we’ll roll it out across the fleet.

4. Making a positive difference to our community

  • Poppy Appeal: We once again welcomed collectors into our stores across the country for the 2015 Poppy Appeal. We extended our support with a number of exclusives including offering our range of poppy products online as well as in store and delivering stick-on poppies with online orders in return for a donation to this year’s appeal. So far, we have raised over £2 million for the Royal British Legion through a combination of in-store collections and donations from sales of our poppy products.
  • Floods: We’ve released emergency funds to help our stores in the Northwest of England and Yorkshire support their local communities affected by flooding. We linked up with local charities to donate all usable products from our Carlisle and Tadcaster stores in addition to donating over 18,000 items of essential clothing (including men’s, women’s and children’s wellies, t-shirts, hats, gloves and scarves) and cleaning products (including mops, buckets, cloths, rubber gloves, brushes, disinfectant, batteries, torches, towels, storage boxes and cookware). We also worked with our suppliers, Highland Spring, who donated over 7,000 bottles of water and McBrides, who donated more than 5,000 cases of all-purpose cleaner, antibacterial spray and bleach.
  • Christmas campaign: We launched our 2015 Christmas campaign featuring Mog’s Christmas Calamity, the first Mog book since 2002, written and illustrated by Judith Kerr. All profits from the book and companion toy are donated to Save the Children’s literacy campaign Read on, Get on and so far we have raised over £1.5 million. We have also signed the Vision for Literacy Business Pledge 2016, launched by the National Literacy Forum. The pledge calls on the UK business community to join the national literacy campaign and deliver tangible benefits to help close the literacy gap. Low literacy is frequently intergenerational and in some disadvantaged areas of the UK up to 35% of the adult population lack the literacy skills expected of an 11-year-old. This compromises employability, health, confidence and happiness and creates barriers to social mobility.

5. A great place to work

  • Diversity: While over 55 per cent of our colleagues are female, we believe that we can do more to ensure that the make-up of some of our teams reflects the diversity of the customers we serve, particularly at a managerial level. External and internal research shows that mentoring is a great way to support women with their career development. We’ve therefore launched a new initiative that means every manager at Sainsbury’s will become a mentor in 2016 for at least one up-and-coming female colleague who has the potential and desire to progress her career.
  • Talent and performance: We have been awarded two Disability-Smart Awards by the British Disability Forum (BDF). First, for our You Can scheme which helps those who have previously faced significant barriers to finding work, to enter the workplace. The second award, was for our new trolley specially designed for children with disabilities. The BDF awards are given to companies that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to employing and working with individuals with disabilities.
  • Building capability: In October, we launched a new approach to learning called ‘Driving My Development’, which means colleagues can learn at a time, place and in a style that suits them best. Colleagues also have access to Sainsbury’s Business School Online, which provides the latest articles, book reviews, infographics, learning guides, videos and pocket books

SOURCE: J Sainsbury plc

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Sainsbury’s Chief Executive Mike Coupe: We approached the half-way point in our 20x20 Sustainability Plan

Sainsbury’s Chief Executive Mike Coupe: We approached the half-way point in our 20×20 Sustainability Plan