Today, (21st April 2022), Co-op has been honoured with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development, which celebrates the convenience retailer’s excellence in sustainability.
The award, which involves a rigorous application process, recognises the reach and depth of the Co-op’s work on reducing the impact of its operations, its focus on the UN sustainable development goals (SDG) and its commitment to continually drive initiatives which significantly affect its environmental impacts and drives real change.
Initiatives such as achieving operational carbon-neutral status for all 2600 Co-op stores and 800 Funeralcare homes, introducing Europe’s most extensive soft plastic instore recycling scheme to make all Co-op’s own brand food and drink packaging easily recyclable and launching a Climate ten-point plan. It includes a world first commitment to be the first supermarket to sell fully carbon neutral own brand food and drink by 2025. This alongside a move launched in 2019 to switch colleagues’ DC pension investments towards more sustainable companies, reducing the carbon footprint of the default fund by almost 50%.
Shirine Khoury-Haq, Co-op CEO, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted to receive this honour, which is recognition of the great work and achievements of our colleagues. Sustainability, climate action and reducing our business impacts are embedded into the heart of what we do at Co-op and there’s never been a more important time to uphold those values as we collectively address the climate crisis. I’m very proud of the changes we have delivered and our plans to go much further to care for the planet.”
Shirine continued: “Our approach is to make a sustainable difference to society and we acknowledge there is much progress still to be achieved and we know we can’t do it alone. Co-operating together with our partners, suppliers, farmers and fellow UK businesses will make a lasting positive change to our planet.”
Co-op is one of just 226 organisations nationally to be recognised with a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise this year. Now in its 56th year, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious business awards in the country, with winning businesses able to use the esteemed Queen’s Awards Emblem for the next five years.