Tesco and WWF to map environmental impact of food production

Tesco and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) have launched a new metric to map the environmental impact of some of the UK’s most popular foods.

According to Tesco, the Sustainable Basket Metric will track the environmental impact of a sample of some of the most regularly purchased foods against key sustainability criteria.

Tesco and WWF are set to run a first full assessment against the metric in early 2020. They will publish the results and confirm a date by which they believe the target of halving the impact of the average UK shopping basket can be reached.

The products included in the basket have been selected due to their popularity with customers and the different impacts each product has on the environment. The basket includes household staples such as bread, milk, meat, fish, and fruit and vegetables.

“The launch of the Sustainable Basket Metric will enable Tesco to fully understand the end-to-end sustainability impact of some of the most popular foods, and we’re proud to have worked with them to create it,” WWF UK CEO Tanya Steele said.

“We want other retailers to take a similar approach and come together to ensure a more sustainable approach to food production.”

The partnership

The two organisations launched a “ground-breaking” partnership last year.

They are working together on a number of sustainability projects. These will contribute to their aim, including soil health and water usage programs in UK agriculture, and working towards the production of zero-deforestation commodities such as soy in Tesco’s supply chains.

Dave Lewis, Tesco Group CEO, says the retailer wants to provide customers with good quality, affordable food that is produced in a sustainable way.

“To help us achieve this we’ve partnered with WWF with the goal of halving the environmental impact of the average UK shopping basket,” he said.

“Throughout our partnership, we’ll be carrying out industry-leading work to make food production more sustainable, including sourcing commodities like soy and palm oil from verified zero-deforestation areas, and improving soil health and water usage on farms in the UK.

“Working together we can help to ensure the natural environment is protected for future generations.”

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