Can sustainability help retailers overcome a 'trust deficit'?
EXCLUSIVE: With the retail sector battling against low trust-levels, high-street closures and a transition to e-commerce, delegates at edie's Responsible Retail conference claimed that embedding sustainability as part of a holistic brand purpose can drive prosperity for businesses.
Responsible Retail: edie launches sector insight report at conference
edie has this week launched a new report providing an in-depth look at the practical steps that can be taken by sustainability professionals in the retail industry to achieve a sustainable future, today.
Mission Possible: Achieving a sustainable future for RETAIL
The second in our brand-new sector insight report series provides an in-depth exploration of the steps that sustainability and energy professionals within Britain's retail industry can take to achieve a sustainable future, today.
BT teams up with Unseen to launch modern slavery reporting app
Communications giant BT has partnered with anti-trafficking charity Unseen to launch an app that lets users report concerns in confidence of potential cases of modern slavery.
Kingfisher to install battery storage at B&Q distribution centre
Home improvement retail giant Kingfisher has announced (30 July) that it will install energy storage facilities at one of its B&Q distribution centres as part of its overall goal to become a net-positive business by 2050.
Starbucks' nationwide 5p cup charge to fund Hubbub's waste-cleaning boat
Starbucks has this week introduced its 5p paper cup charge to all 950 UK stores, with the proceeds of the charge to be used by environmental charity Hubbub to fund a plastic boat set to clean up waste in the Thames.
Just Eat trials seaweed sachets as alternative to single-use plastics
Online food ordering firm Just Eat has commenced a trial of compostable sachets made from seaweed, as part of an effort to reduce the amount of plastic used by its UK restaurant partners.
Luxury sector unites to create roadmap for sustainability
Major luxury firms such as Ralph Lauren, Louis Vuitton and Chanel have developed a sustainable roadmap to help the sector address the challenges posed by climate change, biodiversity loss and rising economic inequality.
McDonald's joins Starbucks to fund new coffee cup innovations
McDonald's has committed £3.8m ($5m) to help research, develop and commercialise recyclable and compostable coffee cups, joining Starbucks as a founding member of the NextGen Cup Consortium and Challenge.
Asda joins Microfibre Consortium to reduce environmental impact of clothing
UK supermarket Asda has joined a consortium aimed at understanding how microfibre shedding occurs, in order to implement projects aimed at reducing how much volume seeps into the ocean.
Aldi exploring emissions reduction goal aligned to Paris Agreement
The UK's fastest growing supermarket Aldi will align its future sustainability strategy "well below" the 2C target set by the Paris Agreement, the company's international managing director of corporate responsibility, Sven van den Boomen, has claimed.
Ikea to ban plastic straws in all its UK stores and restaurants by October 2018
Global furniture retailer Ikea has announced (July 16) that it will stop selling packs of single-use plastic straws in its UK and Ireland stores later this year, as part of its commitment to eliminate all single-use plastics from its global product range by 2020.
Morrisons trials in-store deposit return system for plastic bottles
Supermarket giant Morrisons has launched a trial of an in-store deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, in a bid to minimise its plastic output and encourage customers to recycle.
Unilever and Sainsbury's among funders for Prince of Wales SDG programme
More than a dozen big-name businesses, including Unilever, Asda and Sainsbury's, have teamed up to work on a Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) initiative to support progress towards the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Starbucks to introduce 5p paper cup charge across all UK stores
Starbucks will add a 5p surcharge to paper cups in its 950 stores across the UK later this month, as well as vowing to eliminate single-use plastic straws from its global operations by 2020.
UK retail giants sign up to collaborative SDG commitment
A group of major retailers, including Ikea, Debenhams and Sainsbury's, have signed up to a series of commitments to collaboratively tackle pressing societal issues by using the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a framework.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: What makes a responsible retailer?
The world of retail is competitive, but sustainability has emerged as a viable way for companies to differentiate themselves. At edie's recent London-based event, the question on everybody's lips was...what makes a responsible retailer?
Does the traditional retail model still work?
The retail landscape is being transformed. Online retail in the UK now makes up around 15 percent of overall retail sales. But what does this mean for the future of responsible retailing and customer engagement?
Why employee engagement is vital in developing sustainable retail brands
Following the recent Responsible Retail event, Harvey Laud, CEO of Helistrat, sustainability management consultancy, discusses how improving stakeholder engagement can help UK retailers realise their sustainability ambitions.
Pret A Manger's head of sustainability questions MP's coffee cup inquiry
Pret A Manger's head of sustainability committed to "maximising" renewable and reusable packaging for coffee cups, but has questioned whether the Environmental Audit Committee's inquiry into disposable coffee cups is the best way to promote resource efficiency and sustainability in the UK.
The seven buzzwords in responsible retail
Debbie Griffiths offers a round-up of some of the most frequently uttered words from edie's Responsible Retailer conference.
Information overload: Why retailers must finetune sustainability communication
Retailers must be careful not to "bombard" consumers with information, despite heightened external pressures to champion Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, according to delegates from Kingfisher, H&M and Debenhams.
A greener footprint: How Timberland's boots ignited a decade of circular economy progress
As Timberland celebrates the 10th anniversary of its EarthKeeper product range which utilises recycled plastic, edie catches up with the outdoor clothing retailer's sustainability director Colleen Vien, who explains how a decade of continual improvements has put the firm on track to achieving the circular business model.
Responsible Retailer: How House of Fraser is reinvigorating its sustainability approach
From being ahead of the curve on supply chain ethics to exploring the adoption of science-based targets, House of Fraser is rapidly making waves in the industry through its "fast moving" Responsible Retailer strategy.
Is high street sustainability an oxymoron?
Debbie Griffiths wants to know how responsible retailers can be...
Plastic packaging: Are retailers ready to face the elephant in the room?
Britain's retailers must address "the elephant in the room" that is the use of polyethene plastic for the delivery of products to and from stores, the head of sustainability at outdoor clothing company Surfdome has told edie.
Sector insight: The state of sustainability in retail
This edie insight report explores some of the key drivers, challenges and opportunities facing sustainable business within the UK retail sector.
Choice editing: a crucial next step for the circular economy?
Manufacturers and retailers should go beyond using persuasion techniques to encourage resource-efficient behaviours towards the process of 'choice editing', where hard-to-recycle products are removed from shelves or certain materials are eliminated from packaging in order to limit consumer choices around the circular economy.
How Britain's retailers can solve the Syrian refugee supply chain quandary
The shock revelation that Syrian refugee children have been found making clothes for a number of British fashion brands serves to highlight the desperate need for more robust procedures and increased collaboration among businesses to drive truly sustainable and ethical supply chains.
Retailers and restaurants stepping up to the plate on sustainable seafood
Fisheries, supermarkets and foodservice businesses are together driving up demand for traceable, sustainable seafood as a new report from the Marine Stewardship council (MSC) reveals that the volume of MSC-certified catch increased by a further 6% last year.
10 top tips to deliver a sustainable built environment
Continuing edie's 'green buildings month' of editorial content, John Lewis's sustainable development manager Phil Birch offers up 10 tips to successfully accelerate sustainable development within the built environment, despite an ongoing period of "political uncertainty".
The Sustainable Business Covered podcast: Episode 11 (Parts 1&2) - Circular economy dreams and responsible retail
What are the next steps that need to be taken to make the circular economy a reality? And are current retail business models fit for purpose if we are to accelerate the transition to a zero-carbon, resource-efficient future? Part two...
Nandos, Subway and Iceland join WRAP's waste reduction commitment
Wrap's voluntary Courtauld Commitment 2025 - which seeks to reduce the resource intensity of Britain's food and drink sector by 20% - has added 30 new signatories this week, taking its representation to 95% of the nation's food retail market.
Competitive retail nature placing supply chain performance at risk
EXCLUSIVE: Retailers need to ask "honest" questions as to whether current emphasis on competition over collaboration is actually stifling business growth and transparency, by damaging supply chains that can't cater to minimal standards from day one.
The best retailers for the world: Driving responsible retail and one-planet prosperity
Low-carbon, resource-efficient retail is the only way forward, but we might also need to dig deeper if we are to find one-planet prosperity. Ahead of Wednesday's Responsible Retail Conference, Mike Townsend explores the real challenges and opportunities - along with evidence of an innovative shift - taking place in Sweden.
Three years on from Rana Plaza: How The Bangladesh Accord plans to leave a positive supply chain legacy
Three years on from the Rana Plaza tragedy, edie's Matt Mace speaks to the executive director of the Bangladesh Accord Rob Wayss on why the seemingly "slow movement" of improving safety standards in the country shouldn't take away from the "unprecedented progress" shown by willing brand signatories.
Price and performance dominant factors for sustainable products, says Kingfisher
EXCLUSIVE: Companies that "plaster their products with 'eco'" are unlikely to make the same connection with consumers, compared with those creating sustainable products that offer other tangible benefits such as better price and enhanced performance.
Caffé Nero triples sustainable farming training scheme
Coffee shop chain Caffé Nero has is tripling its efforts to promote sustainable practices to coffee farmers as a means to improve the "transparency and addressability" of its supply chain.
Policies, data and imports: tackling the trilemma of collaboration for Britain's retailers
In the wake of some key waste and resource efficiency issues being brought to light within the UK retail sector, edie's Matt Mace speaks to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) about how to drive collaboration in this highly-competitive market as a means to deliver low-carbon, resource-efficient ways of doing business.
edie Responsible Retail Conference programme
Can sustainability and profitability go hand-in-hand? Are current retail business models fit for purpose if we are to deliver the transformational change needed to create a low-carbon, zero-waste economy? Download now.
edie launches Responsible Retail Conference to discuss business-critical sustainability challenges
Retailers will be equipped with the tools they need to influence and engage with stakeholders on sustainability and realise the commercial benefits of low-carbon, resource-efficient business models at a brand new edie conference in September.
Waitrose cooks up new food waste packaging for pasta range
Waitrose has announced it will become the first supermarket in the UK to launch to new pasta ranges where the packaging is made, in part, from waste food produce.
Recyclable coffee cups and mushroom packaging: 7 innovations that could win the war on waste
In a week that sees the recyclability of coffee cups and cardboard packaging come under scrutiny in Hugh's War on Waste, edie rounds up the potential technologies and solutions that Britain's retailers could be exploring to make 'waste' a word of the past.
Starbucks tests (genuinely) recyclable coffee cup
Starbucks is "very interested" in the potential outcome of a new collaborative partnership with sustainable packaging company FrugalPac, which will see the coffee shop chain trial a recyclable coffee cup made from 100% paper.
Kimberly-Clark sets 'aggressive' new sustainability targets
Personal care consumer product manufacturer Kimberly-Clark has established a new six-year sustainability strategy to build on the success of the "aggressive goals" the company has just surpassed, as revealed in its latest sustainability report.
Tesco finds an appetite for 100% sustainably sourced cocoa
Supermarket giant Tesco has revealed that it will acquire all cocoa used for its own label chocolate, biscuits, cakes, deserts and cereal products sold in the UK from Rainforest Alliance Certified sources by the end of 2018.
EFRA launches food waste inquiry as Europe gears up to tackle supermarket waste
The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) Committee has launched a new inquiry to establish the impacts of the seven million tonnes of food waste produced in the UK, as a European-wide campaign to ban supermarkets from throwing away food closes in on a major milestone.
M&S expands redistribution trials for frozen perishable food
Marks and Spencer (M&S) has been provided with 'assured advice' from Westminster City Council to expand a trial aiming to redistribute chilled and perishable food waste to local charities.
Tesco's distribution fleet at risk of being 'left behind' in decarbonisation movement
Tesco's engineering and maintenance manager has claimed that there is "no love for the lorry" when it comes to promoting fuel efficiency and decarbonising exhaust emissions, and has called on Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) and policymakers to provide more clarity on a low-carbon future for freight fleets.
Ikea chief: Business and governments must go all in for a carbon-free 21st century
The chief sustainability officer of the world's biggest furniture retailer has called on global governments to galvanise the low-carbon movement, primarily through carbon pricing, to enable companies to unlock the "tremendous" business opportunities that lie ahead.
Lidl makes ethical fruit and veg pledge to support British suppliers
German discount retailer Lidl has today (21 June) announced a commitment to the National Farmers' Union (NFU) Fruit and Vegetable Pledge, underlining the importance of maintaining long-term, sustainable relationships with its British farmers and suppliers.
Tesco's food waste climbed by 4% last year
As Tesco's chief executive used a keynote speech in Cape Town to implore companies to do more to tackle food waste, the UK supermarket revealed that its own food waste had increased by 4% to 59,400 tonnes last year.
Businesses urged to 'make friends with disruption' and embrace the millennial movement
EXCLUSIVE: Businesses should do more to drive the sustainability agenda by embracing the willingness of the first "digital natives and a globally empathetic generation" in order to ignite behaviour change within consumers, the chief executive of collaborative organisation Collectively has said.
Retailers make landmark sustainable seafood pledge
Leading British supermarkets Tesco, Sainsbury's and Marks & Spencer (M&S) are among a cross-sector cluster of organisations that have voluntarily signed an agreement to protect a key Arctic region from industrial fishing, by preventing suppliers from expanding cod fisheries into pristine marine waters.