Fairtrade and higher welfare
- There was a 15.1% increase in Fairtrade sales last year compared to 2016, when the overall market growth was 7.4%.
- Co-op says it became the first UK retailer to sell and use only 100% Fairtrade cocoa in its own-brand products, from the chocolate sprinkles on doughnuts to the chocolate chips in cookies.
- There was £88m worth of sales of higher-welfare fresh, frozen and prepared products, down from £99m in 2016.
- Since 2015, £2.5bn has been invested in sourcing Co-op branded British meat, produce and dairy products.
- As a result, all Co-op branded fresh meat is 100% sourced from Britain since May 2017, with the goal that all Co-op branded frozen meat products will be British by 2019.
- In terms of seafood sustainability, 57% of Co-op branded fish was wild caught (the rest was farmed). The number of Marine Stewardship Council-certified products increased to 49, up from 40 in 2016.
- At the end of 2017, 44% of the Co-op’s branded food and drink products carried no red traffic light – this remains unchanged from the year before.
- To make healthier choices accessible, 96% of the Co-op’s own-brand healthier choices are no more expensive than their standard equivalent product, but this is down from 100% of products in 2016.
- Co-op aims to make a minimum of 50% of its price-based promotions on food and non-alcoholic drinks applicable to healthier offerings by 2020. (However, it admits it’s behind schedule, as 2017 saw a slight decrease to 36%, compared to the 38% on offer in 2016.)
- There were 63m teaspoons of sugar removed from categories such as Co-op branded breakfast cereals, grocery cooking sauces, flavoured milk, desserts and confectionery in 2017.
- When it came to salt, 97% of Co-op branded products met the Department of Health salt target, as well as 35 out of 46 relevant categories.
Recycling and food waste
- In terms of total operational waste, 96% was reused, recycled or recovered – which remains unchanged from 2016.
- There were gains for Co-op brand product packaging, with 71% easy to recycle, up from 46% in 2016. The company has an aim for 80% of their packaging to be easy to recycle by 2020.
- Charity partners were given 442 tonnes of surplus food from the Co-op, down from 512 tonnes in 2016.
- There are eight Farming Groups in Co-op, made up of just over 400 farmers and growers. 79% of these farms have active plans in place to reduce the amount of water they use and 100% have water pollution controls in place.
- The agricultural team made 117 site visits to monitor animal welfare at sites such as farms, hatcheries and abattoirs last year, down from 127 visits in 2016.