Tesco and its suppliers join forces to halve food waste by 2030


21 Sep 2017 --- Tesco has announced ground-breaking partnerships with suppliers to tackle UN Sustainable Development Goals on food waste. Speaking at a meeting of Champions 12.3 in New York yesterday, Dave Lewis, CEO of Tesco announced partnership agreements with 24 of the retailer's largest food suppliers, who will adopt the Sustainable Development Goals to halve food waste by 2030.  

The suppliers, who represent over £17bn (US$22.9bn) worth of Tesco sales, will publish food waste data for their own operations within 12 months, and have committed to take the steps needed to reduce food waste in their supply chain, as well as innovating to make it easier for consumers to reduce waste in their homes.

In addition, Tesco announced that its businesses in the Republic of Ireland, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Hungary have published their food waste data, following four years of publication in the UK. The move builds on Tesco’s commitment to transparency on food waste data to use that information to help reduce food waste in its operations.

Leading food waste campaigner Tristram Stuart welcomed the news, outlining Tesco as “the world-leading supermarket” on reporting food waste.

“We have been challenging Tesco and other supermarkets on transparent reporting of food waste for years now. This commitment to ensuring that supply chain waste is measured and reported makes Tesco the world-leading supermarket on transparent food waste reporting and represents a significant step towards meeting the global goal to halve food waste by 2030. It’s time for other businesses to follow suit, and for Tesco, along with the rest of the world’s supermarkets, to demonstrate, if they can, that their businesses are not inherently wasteful,” Stuart states.

In his speech, Lewis said: “Great progress has been made, but the reality is that we need many more companies, countries or cities committing to halve food waste by 2030, measuring and publishing their data and acting on that insight to tackle food waste. I am delighted that many of our major suppliers have taken this important step so we can work in partnership to reduce food waste.”

The suppliers involved in the agreement are: Yeo Valley; Gomez; Branston; Greencore; Icelandic Seachill; AMT; DPS; Kepak Meat Division; G's; Allied Bakeries; Moy Park; Richard Hochfeld; Ornua; Cranswick; Samworths; 2SFG; Hilton; Espersen; Greenyard Frozen; Müller Milk & Ingredients; Kerry Foods; Bakkavor; Froneri; Noble.

As a major supplier of cheese and butter to Tesco, Ornua will publish food waste data for all of its global operations including those in the Ireland & the UK within 12 months, and has committed to take the steps needed to reduce food waste in their supply chain, as well as innovating to make it easier for consumers to reduce waste in their homes. 

Commenting on Ornua’s commitment, Jeanne Kelly, Head of Sustainability said: “We are delighted to be working with Tesco on what is an incredibly important and progressive initiative by them.  As a dairy business, we are already focused on reducing food wastage across all our operations, as such our partnership with Tesco is highly complementary to this and our wider sustainability goals.”

“Ornua has devised a framework called ‘Our Way Matters’ which sets out the positive steps we are taking to reach our sustainability goals.  Aligned to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, the framework contains three pillars which contain positive initiatives, such as our partnership agreement with Tesco, that will benefit the environment, our business and our community.”

The supplier agreement is the first struck between a major retailer and its food suppliers. It follows agreements over the last 12 months at The Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD) and Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) with branded suppliers to align efforts around Champions 12.3 goals.

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