National Refill Day: How businesses are uniting against single-use plastic water bottles
Since its launch in 2017, City to Sea's Refill campaign has spurred dozens of big and small businesses to offer free water bottle refills. To mark National Refill Day 2019, edie explores the impact of the campaign to date.
Ralph Lauren pledges to set approved science-based targets by 2020
Ralph Lauren has vowed to pledge to source 100% renewable electricity for its operations by the end of 2019, before setting approved science-based emissions targets in 2020.
Talking SDG engagement with Ben Kellard, Peter Andrews and Tor Harris
edie's Mission Possible sofa chat show returns for 2019. In this episode, edie discusses the Sustainable Development Goals with leading experts from the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Waitrose.
M&S's Mike Barry to step down as director of sustainable business
Marks and Spencer's (M&S) director of sustainability Mike Barry has announced plans to step down from leading the company's 'Plan A' strategy at the end of the month.
Co-op issues £300m bond supporting Fairtrade movement
Retailer Co-op's parent organisation Co-op Group has raised a £300m green bond which will be used to support the Fairtrade movement's bid for more sustainable farming supply chains.
Waitrose to launch 'invisible door' that could save retailers £1.5bn on energy bills
Waitrose & Partners will introduce an "invisible" door" to combat the amount of avoidable energy that is lost at entrance doors to retail stores, with research suggesting that a widescale rollout could help British retailers save £1.5bn annually on energy bills.
Morrisons rolls out plastic-free fruit and veg offering nationwide
Supermarket giant Morrisons will roll out packaging-free fruit and veg across 60 of its UK stores this summer, following a successful trial at three of its stores.
The Body Shop launches in-store take-back scheme for plastic packaging
Health and beauty retailer The Body Shop has launched a multinational take-back scheme for its plastic packaging, after consumers voiced concerns that not all of the brand's packaging is accepted by local authorities under kerbside recycling schemes.
Tesco: Behaviour change will 'always have a place' in energy efficiency
As the fruits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution continue to re-shape how business operates, many companies are now turning to digital technologies for all of their energy reduction schemes. But for Tesco, behaviour change will always be a "key" piece of the energy management puzzle.
Walmart partners with HSBC to launch green finance programme for suppliers
As part of a partnership with HSBC, US-based retail giant Walmart has developed a green finance initiative that rewards suppliers for setting, meeting or exceeding ambitious sustainability aims.
Costa joins Hull redistribution scheme to combat food waste and hunger
Coffee chain Costa has joined a collaborative, business-led initiative which uses a food sharing app to help tackle food waste and food poverty issues in Hull.
Tesco to trial plastic-to-oil innovation which makes all packaging 'recyclable'
Supermarket giant Tesco has inked a deal with Swindon-based recycling firm Recycling Technologies, which will see the retailer trial an innovative system that converts soft plastics back into oil.
Ikea reveals mixed progress towards 'climate-positive' and circular economy goals
The world's largest furniture retailer has revealed that 70% of the materials used to make its products during 2018 were either renewable or recycled, as it strives to reach the 100% mark by 2030.
Lidl set for national roll out of 'Too Good to Waste' fruit and veg boxes
Supermarket chain Lidl UK has confirmed that it will roll out its 'Too Good to Waste' produce boxes across all stores, after a trial across 122 locations last year proved successful.
Target supports suppliers to set science-based emissions aims after having own goals approved
US-based retail giant Target has pledged to ensure that 80% of its suppliers set science-based emissions-reduction targets by 2023, after it was given the Science Based Targets Initiative's (SBTi) stamp of approval for its own carbon and greenhouse gas (GHG) ambitions this week.
First Utility rebrands as Shell Energy and switches 700,000 customers to renewable energy
A year after Shell acquired First Utility it has rebranded the supplier as Shell Energy Retail and has today (25 March) confirmed it has switched more than 700,000 homes in Britain to 100% renewable electricity.
John Lewis Partnership targets 'net-zero' operational carbon emissions by 2050
Retail giant John Lewis Partnership has today (20 March) pledged to achieve "net-zero" carbon emissions for its direct operations by 2050, without purchasing carbon offsets.
Industrial Strategy not supporting clean growth in 'neglected' sectors, MPs warn
Sector Deals developed under the UK Government's Industrial Strategy must be bolstered to ensure that "neglected" industries such as steel and retail are supported throughout the low-carbon transition.
Aldi targets plastic glitter phase-out by 2020
Supermarket chain Aldi has pledged to remove plastic glitter from 100% of its own-brand products by 2020, starting with its Halloween 2019 range.
Tesla to raise EV prices as it cuts back on retail store closures
Tesla looks set to reduce the number of brick and mortar retail stores that will close over the following months, in a move that will see the prices of its electric vehicles (EVs) increase by 3%.
Primark launches jeans made with 100% sustainably sourced cotton
Fashion retailer Primark has launched its first range of jeans made with 100% sustainably certified cotton, after expanding its sustainable cotton farming and sourcing scheme.
Amazon launches box 'grouping' service to slash packaging and emissions
Online retailer Amazon has launched a service that enables customers to choose a set delivery day and 'group' their orders, which will help the company reduce its packaging footprint and optimise its delivery routes.
Landsec launches textile take-back scheme to combat fast-fashion
Property developer Landsec is launching a fashion take-back scheme at one of the UK's largest shopping centres in a bid to encourage consumers to divert used textiles from landfill.
Circular roundtable: How can businesses accelerate the resource revolution?
Sustainability and corporate responsibility managers from a range of businesses recently gathered in London for an exclusive roundtable hosted by edie and EDF Energy, to discuss how organisations are stepping up efforts to accelerate a circular economy.
Iceland removes plastic packaging from fresh produce lines in 'greengrocer' scheme
Supermarket Iceland is trialing the removal of plastic packaging from its fruit and vegetable lines at one of its largest UK stores, in a bid to gauge whether consumers are willing to buy loose produce.
Big-name supermarkets to use innovative blast freezers in fight against food waste
Sainsbury's, Aldi and Marks and Spencer (M&S) are among a group of big-name supermarkets to back an innovative new 'blast freeze' technology which enables surplus stock to be frozen rapidly, ready for redistribution.
Waitrose installs Formula One technology to boost energy savings from fridges
Supermarket Waitrose & Partners is set to install innovative technology inspired by Formula One race cars across its stores, in a move it claims will reduce the energy consumption of its refrigerators by up to 25%.
Aldi launches new regional redistribution scheme in bid to slash food waste
Discount supermarket chain Aldi is set to directly donate surplus food from 24 of its UK stores to local charities after partnering with product redistribution platform Neighbourly.
Amazon targets carbon-neutral shipments by 2030
Online retailer Amazon has set an ongoing target of achieving carbon neutrality for all its global shipments, starting with a 2030 ambition of making half of its shipments 'net-zero'.
Kingfisher has emissions goals approved by Science Based Targets initiative
Home improvement retailer has had goals to reduce scope 1 and 2 emissions by 22% and emissions from purchased goods, services and the use of sold products by 40% approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
How SDG alignment helped Walgreens Boots Alliance prove the profitability of sustianability
EXCLUSIVE: By aligning the company's sustainability strategy with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Walgreens Boot Alliance's sustainability team have been able to secure "far greater" boardroom-level support for its actions, the company's vice president for CSR has revealed.
Living Lagom in London: Inside Ikea's new 'leading' sustainable store
edie reporter Sarah George takes a trip to Greenwich to learn how Ikea's new store - touted as its "most sustainable" UK location to date - evidences the company's shift towards circularity and 'climate-positivity'.
M&S rolls out in-store take-back scheme for hard-to-recycle plastics
Retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) has pledged to install take-back bins for hard-to-recycle plastics across the UK by the end of the year, after launching a new plastics recycling scheme this week.
Selfridges launches insect-based food range as demand for sustainable protein grows
Department store Selfridges has unveiled plans to stock a range of insect-based snacks, in a bid to showcase the environmental and nutritional benefits of alternative proteins to UK customers.
Morrisons tests customer appetite for plastic-free shopping in paper bag trial
Supermarket giant Morrisons has this week launched a trial of US-style paper grocery bags, in a bid to gauge consumer attitudes to plastic-free options at the checkout.
Aldi achieves carbon neutrality for UK and Ireland operations
Supermarket chain Aldi UK and Ireland has achieved its 2019 target of becoming a 'net-zero' business, after investing in a carbon offsetting programme last year.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: Advancing the plastics debate with Waitrose and Co-op
As part of a week of action on single-use plastics and the launch of edie's Plastics Hub, the Sustainable Business Covered podcast returns for 2019 with exclusive, plastic-focused interviews with sustainability experts at the Co-op, Surfers Against Sewage and Waitrose.
M&S removes plastic packaging and 'best-before' dates from produce
Retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) has begun trialling dozens of plastic-free fruit and vegetable lines without 'best-before' date stickers, in a bid to reduce consumer packaging and food waste outputs.
Iceland collects more than 300,000 plastic bottles in reverse vending trial
Frozen food retailer Iceland has unveiled the results of its trial of an in-store deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, revealing that the scheme has captured more than 300,000 bottles since its launch in May 2018.
Stella McCartney: Policy must encourage businesses to make fashion sustainable
Designer and green activist Stella McCartney has called on policymakers to implement laws which will incentivise big-name fashion brands to shift away from cradle-to-grave models and poor supply chain practices.
Merlin Entertainments begins single-use plastic phase out, starting with straws
The Legolands, Sea Life and Madame Tussauds operator has launched a review into the sale and distribution of single-use plastic items across its global estate, pledging a removal of plastic straws from its operations by the end of 2018.
Five ways retailers are using Black Friday to champion CSR
Today (23 November) marks Black Friday - but while the majority of companies and consumers conform to this spending spree, a select few a using the occasion to champion resource efficiency, social sustainability and environmental conservation. Here, edie outlines how five companies that are turning that trend on its head.
Black Friday is the antithesis of sustainable business, but there's an alternative
It's that time again. Today is Black Friday, the biggest sales event of the year, as Britain's retailers stack high and sell low before Christmas. Sustainable Development Goal 12 (sustainable consumption and production patterns) seems all but forgotten for the time being.
MPs urge online fashion giants to disclose environmental and social impacts
In letters to five of the UK's largest online-only fashion retailers, including Amazon and ASOS, the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) has called on brands within the so-called "fast fashion" industry to disclose the full extent of their environmental and social impacts.
Why Iceland's deforestation-focused Christmas advert won't be on TV this year
Iceland's decision to use part of its Christmas communications campaign on an advert that highlighted the destructive nature of palm oil has been blocked from airing on UK television channels, but why?
M&S unveils reusable bags made with 75% 'ocean-bound' plastic
Retail giant Marks and Spencer (M&S) has unveiled a new range of reusable carrier bags made with 75% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic in a bid to boost consumer awareness around plastic pollution and raise money for recycling infrastructure.
Government unveils new £15m scheme to tackle retail food waste
The UK Government has today (1 October) announced that it will spend £15m on a new initiative aimed at redistributing almost £1bn worth of food waste from supermarkets, other retailers and manufacturers.
One foot in ‘today’, the other in ‘tomorrow’
The retail sector has done much in the last decade on sustainability, but it is increasingly apparent that all this has just been a dress rehearsal, a beginning not an end.
Co-op switches to compostable bags as it pledges to eliminate single-use plastics
The Co-op has revealed it will swap around 60 million plastic carrier bags with compostable alternatives that can be used as food waste caddy liners, as part of a wider goal to "remove" single-use plastics from its product offerings.
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.
M&S to phase out plastic cutlery in cafés
Marks and Spencer (M&S) will start phasing out plastic cutlery across its in-store cafés next month in a move it claims will remove 75 million pieces of plastic from its waste stream annually.
Landsec hints at energy storage to bolster Britain's biggest shopping centre solar array
The UK's largest commercial property developer, Landsec, has revealed that it is sourcing 22% less grid electricity for its White Rose shopping centre in Leeds after installing a 2,902-panel solar array on the roof.
Walmart reduced supply chain emissions by 20 million tonnes last year
The world's largest retailer has revealed that its suppliers collectively reduced their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 20 million tonnes in 2017, as the company pushes towards a target to cut supply chain emissions by one billion tonnes by 2030.
Aldi on track to be carbon-neutral by 2019
Discount supermarket chain Aldi has today (August 9) announced it is on track to achieve carbon neutrality in its operations in the UK and Ireland by the end of next year, following a string of multi-million-pound investments in renewable energy arrays and energy efficiency measures.
Co-op partners with The Real Junk Food Project to cut food waste
The Co-op has announced that it has started a new partnership with food redistribution scheme The Real Junk Food Project, in a bid to reduce its food waste output while tackling hunger in Leeds.
Landsec partners with big-name retailers on shopping centre refill scheme
Property developer Landsec has launched a new water bottle refill scheme in its shopping centres, partnering up with a host of big-name retailers and food and beverage brands in a bid to drive customers away from single-use plastic bottles.
Lidl launches 'Too Good to Waste' fruit and veg discount box to cut back on food waste
In a bid to cut back on food waste, Lidl UK has launched a trial run selling boxes of fruit and vegetables no longer considered at their best at a discount price.
Sustainable shopping: How are UK supermarkets tackling plastic pollution?
Whether it's products containing microbeads, items sold in unnecessary single-use packaging, or consumers opting for plastic bags at the checkout, Britain's supermarkets are at the epicentre of the plastics problem. Here, edie examines the new actions retailers are taking to reduce avoidable plastic waste.
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.
Available on demand: The SDG 'power hour' webinar
Sustainability experts from BT, the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the UK Stakeholders for Sustainable Development (UKSSD) and DNV GL are all featured in edie's webinar focused on business engagement with the SDGs, which is now available to watch on demand.
edie Explains: Onsite solar
What is onsite solar and how could it work for a business? What are the business benefits from installing onsite solar? And what considerations and funding opportunities need to be examined to build the business case? This free edie Explains guide gives you everything you need to know.
edie Explains: The Internet of Things
What is the Internet of Things (IoT) and how is it relevant to corporate sustainability? What are the potential business benefits of deploying IoT technology across your operations? And what does the future hold for the IoT? This free edie Explains guide gives you everything you need to know.
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.
Speaker line-up confirmed for edie's SDG 'Power Hour' webinar
Sustainability experts from BT, the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the UK Stakeholders for Sustainable Development (UKSSD) and DNV GL are all set to feature in a live edie webinar focused on business engagement with the SDGs, taking place on 26 July.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: In the green room with Whitbread's James Pitcher
Welcome back to the green room - edie's exclusive interview hub for sustainability leaders, brought to you as part of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast. Up next to provide the insights of a leading sustainable business: Whitbread's director of sustainability James Pitcher.
Report: UK supermarkets failing to protect supply chain workers' rights
The UK's largest supermarkets "routinely" implement weak human rights policies in their supply chains, "exerting relentless pressure" on their suppliers while "trapping" overseas workers in poverty, a new report from Oxfam has claimed.
Tesco and Target join CDP's supply chain initiative
Tesco and Target have committed to a programme to cut emissions, tackle deforestation and promote water efficiency in their supply chains, through a partnership with CDP.
The Body Shop exploring 'back-up plans' to help reach energy targets
EXCLUSIVE: The Body Shop has introduced a new energy saving guide and is considering a carbon offset scheme as a "back-up plan” to meet its 2020 sustainability targets, following slow progress on its renewable power, energy efficiency and packaging innovation aims.
Stella McCartney opens London store with 'purest air in the capital'
Luxury fashion brand Stella McCartney has fitted its new London store with cutting-edge filter technology in a bid to create the capital's cleanest pocket of air.
Breaking the plastics habit: The changing role of business in achieving a circular economy
Between increasing consumer pressures and sluggish policy changes, corporates are being stretched to their limits to tackle the plastics problem - but it is critical that this sudden step-change in awareness of the issue does not lead to unintended consequences, as edie's Matt Mace investigates.
Paradigm shift: How ‘unsatisfied customers’ are driving M&S’s sustainability progress
With Marks & Spencer (M&S) publishing the latest update to its Plan A sustainability strategy this week, the retailer’s director of sustainable business Mike Barry explains how mounting consumer pressures have helped to accelerate progress towards delivering sustainable products and packaging.
Network Rail targets plastics, cups and coffee grounds in latest waste drive
Network Rail has unveiled sweeping plans to reduce waste across the country's busiest rail stations, by implementing a ban on plastic cutlery and expanding recycling schemes for disposable cups and waste coffee grounds.
Ben & Jerry's trials blockchain platform to offset consumer carbon footprints
Unilever-owned ice cream brand Ben & Jerry's is piloting a carbon offsetting scheme using blockchain technology that enables customers to purchase carbon credits that help with global anti-deforestation initiatives.
Tesco cuts carbon emissions 13% in a year
Tesco has revealed that it reduced its carbon emissions by 13% in 2017 against a 2016 baseline, as it strives towards a science-based target of becoming a carbon-neutral business by 2050.
The state of sustainability 2018: edie publishes final insight report for UK businesses
edie's year-long sector insight report series concludes today (14 May) with the final edition which rounds up the key sustainability drivers, challenges and opportunities facing Britain's biggest industries.
Co-op to trial reverse vending for plastic bottles at UK festivals
Co-op will become the first retailer in the UK to use reverse vending machines as part of a deposit return scheme from plastic containers, with trials set to take place at pop-up stores across UK festivals this summer.
The Supply Chain Sustainability Handbook
This handbook outlines eight essential opportunities that businesses can seize upon now to drive supply chain sustainability. Each page of the handbook provides an overview of the opportunity, supplemented by top tips, ‘in action’ case studies and expert comments from businesses that will be represented at edie’s Sustainable Supply Chains 2018 conference in June.
Reusable cup use climbs 156% at Starbucks during 5p charge trials
The number of consumers using a reusable cup in Starbucks stores located across London has shot up by 156% in just six weeks, following the introduction of a 5p paper cup charge.
UK retailers 'will not suffer financial losses' from bottle deposit scheme
Retailers will not suffer financial losses from the introduction of a plastic bottle deposit return scheme (DRS) in the UK, according to an analysis of a similar system in Norway.
Unilever joins On-Pack Recycling Label scheme to boost plastics recycling
Unilever has joined the On-Pack Recycling Label (OPRL) scheme to promote the recyclability of its products to consumers, while a six-month trial of clean-cold technology in the company's ice cream transportation trucks has delivered cost-effective environmental benefits.
Accelerating the shift: 10 industry game-changers for low-carbon vehicles
This insight report, produced in partnership with UK Power Networks Services, investigates some of the game-changing developments which are driving green mobility.
Why you need to know what the animals in your supply chain are being fed
Earlier this month, sitting in a packed room full of food and feed industry executives from around the world, we spoke together with leading retailers on why animal feed is one of the critical sustainability issue of our times.
Paving the way to a better built environment
Construction businesses lie at the juncture of some of the world's most pressing environmental and societal challenges. Here, the UK Green Building Council's chief executive Julie Hirigoyen charts the progress being made across the industry in the key areas of climate change, resource use, nature and biodiversity, health & wellbeing and socio-economic impact.
Why the retail industry is taking a leading role in delivering the SDGs
Last month saw a landmark moment. Better Retail Better World, a retail industry initiative to tackle global challenges highlighted by the UN, including modern slavery and decent work, sustainable economic growth, inequalities, climate change and responsible consumption and production, commenced.
Greggs builds appetite for water efficiency with service switch
On-the-go food retailer Greggs has chosen water retail company Business Stream to supply services to all of its managed outlets and major production sites across the UK.
Energy innovation: Delivering the smart grid of the future, today
The mission is clear: we must accelerate the shift to zero-carbon energy systems in order to slash emissions and mitigate global warming. But this mission IS possible: renewable energy costs are tumbling and new approaches to energy management such as battery storage and demand response are offering new ways for organisations to operate more sustainably.
McDonald's to reduce emissions by a third under approved science-based targets
McDonald's has become the first global restaurant company to have an emissions reduction target approved by the Science-Based Target Initiative (SBTI), as the fast food giant outlines plans to reduce carbon emissions by 150 million tonnes.
Financial incentives for recyclability the way forward, says Co-op
A fiscal system that rewards recyclability and labelling, coupled with reducing the range of polymers available for use, would enable retailers and waste management firms to better tackle the rise of plastics pollution, according to the Co-op's environment manager Iain Ferguson.
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: Sustainable packaging and the plastics problem
edie travels to the Museum of Brands to discuss solutions to plastic waste and wider resource efficiency issues with business representatives from Iceland, Tetra Pak and James Cropper.
The big plastics debate: Industry must be fearless in zero-waste pursuit, Iceland claims
Iceland said it would not be afraid to make mistakes when tackling the issue of plastics waste, during a unique panel debate also featuring Co-op, Marks and Spencer (M&S) and Coca-Cola.
The public mood is changing – how can business talk to customers about sustainability?
The public mood appears to be changing. David Attenborough's emotive Blue Planet backed by on-going campaigns in the Daily Mail and on Sky has focussed attention on single use plastics. Michael Gove, eager for a positive post-Brexit platform, has sensed an opportunity and started talking about new legislation. Sustainability is creeping up the agenda, customers are getting inquisitive about company behaviour. How should business respond?
Honda to play central role in V2G demonstrator project
Car giant Honda has teamed up with other firms, local bodies and academic institutions for a new project that aims to demonstrate the business case for Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technologies across the UK.
British retailers linked to polluting supplier factories
Marks & Spencer, H&M and ASOS are among the global companies that have agreed to incorporate new measures into sourcing policies for textile fibres, after a new report linked Tesco, Asda and Next to Asian viscose factories that are polluting the environment and contributing to premature deaths.
Starbucks trials 5p paper cup charge
Starbucks has today (26 February) announced a 5p surcharge trial on paper cups in select London stores in a bid to help reduce waste and encourage the uptake of reusable cups.
Are reuse and refill missing pieces of our sustainable packaging jigsaw?
Last week the Church of England and Members of Parliament pledged to go single-use plastic-free for the 40 days of Lent, while the BBC plans to be similarly plastic-free in its operations by 2020. These are the latest (at time of writing at least) in an ever-growing list of sustainable packaging commitments being made at an almost breakneck pace.
Valentines Day: Chocolates driving deforestation across the globe, report claims
A box of chocolates may not be the most environmentally friendly way to show your love this Valentine's Day, a report published today claims.
Water retail market reaches 100,000 milestone
More than 100,000 supply points have switched water retailer in the first 10 months of the market, according to figures released by the market operator - MOSL.
edie Explains: ISO 14001
This updated edie Explains guide, produced in association with NQA, provides an in-depth summary of the ISO 14001 Standard which is used to establish and maintain a continuous level of environmental performance improvements.