Winners of 'Waitrose Way Awards' announced
Last night, Waitrose has announced the winners of its of 'Waitrose Way Awards', to celebrate suppliers' outstanding initiatives to enhance the sustainability of their businesses and, ultimately, the food that ends up on consumers' plates. This is the second year that these awards have taken place.
The winners, selected from more than 150 entries, all highlighted the important role their business plays in safeguarding the future of the environment and the food industry. Winning schemes range from a pioneering use of drip irrigation halving the use of water; to initiatives that have significantly boosted British agriculture by increasing the sustainability of arable crops, animal feed and food production.
This year's awards were held at the new Leckford Farm Shop at the Leckford Estate, the Waitrose farm in Hampshire, and the 15 winners were presented with a sustainably-sourced, British Oak award by Waitrose Managing Director, Mark Price.
Suppliers were invited to enter the awards under the categories of Treading lightly, Championing British, Living well and Treating people fairly - which are the four core principles of the supermarket's CSR policy, 'The Waitrose way'. This year, four awards for building and development suppliers were also introduced - Treading lightly for carbon, waste and water and also for an award for Responsible Development Innovation.
A panel of distinguished judges; Lord Curry of Kirkharle CBE, Dr Mark Ratnaragh, David Logan, Steve Isaia, Emma Tustain, Susan Nisbet and Paul King worked alongside senior Waitrose buyers and the retailer's Corporate Social Responsibility team, to choose 15 winners who have gone the extra mile to demonstrate best practice.
Quentin Clark, Head of Sustainability and Ethical Sourcing at Waitrose said: 'These awards are a fantastic way of celebrating the hard work that our suppliers have been doing to improve the sustainability of their businesses and ultimately the Waitrose business as a whole. It was hard to pick the winners from such a high standard of applicants and we are delighted that so many suppliers share the same goals that we do.'
The 'Waitrose Way Awards' also mark the opening of the new Leckford Farm Shop which is already trading ahead of expectation and proving popular with local customers and shoppers from further afield. Selling over 1,000 products with a strong emphasis on high quality, and locally and regionally sourced food, the shop was built with sustainability in mind. The oak framed shop has been purposely built for the Leckford Estate, using LED lights, extensive use of natural lighting, rainwater harvesting, and wooden furniture and fittings handmade by a local carpenter.
- Championing British (own label) - Dalehead Foods for their focus on long term relationships with British arable farmers in order to ensure crops, animal feed and British pork production remain sustainable.
- Championing British (brand) - Jordans and Ryvita for sourcing 80 per cent of their ingredients from 79 British farmers, all of whom work to 'Conservation Grade' standard.
- Living Well (own label) - Dalehead Foods for their 'Equipped for Life' initiative to improve the health and well being of their employees and raising the awareness of their Occupational Health team.
- Living Well (brand) - Innocent for teaming up with WWF UK to drive a sustainable nutrition campaign and setting up the Innocent Foundation.
- Treading Lightly - carbon (own label) - Moy Park for an energy saving of 11,200 CO2e and £2m in 2012 compared to 2011.
- Treading Lightly - carbon (brand) - Unilever for their compressed versions of aerosol deodorant cans, reducing the carbon footprint by 25 per cent.
- Treading Lightly - waste (own label) - Moy Park for diverting over 96 per cent of waste from landfill across all UK processing sites, with the long term aim of diverting 100 per cent of waste.
- Treading Lightly - waste (brand) - Fresh Olive Company for working with WasteSolve to divert 100 per cent of their waste from landfill and ensuring that all waste produced is recovered for positive use such as renewable energy.
- Treading Lightly - water (own label) - Produce World for pioneering the use of drip irrigation in the UK, resulting in a 40-50 per cent reduction in water used.
- Treating People Fairly (own label) - Walker and Son Bakery for its exemplary outreach work into the local community, working with schools, disadvantaged young people and charities, offering volunteering and work placements and a range of benefits for Walkers employees.
- Treating People Fairly (brand) - Café Direct for reinvesting 50 per cent of its profits to its Producer Partnership Programme, which has enabled 91 projects over the last three years and benefitted an average of 17,000 smallholder farmers.
- Responsible development innovation award - Carter Retail Equipment Ltd for developing an innovative, low carbon refrigeration system which resulted in a 32 per cent reduction in overall carbon emissions and 16 per cent energy saving in a year.
- Treading lightly - waste - F & R Cawley Ltd for working with Waitrose to achieve the zero waste to landfill target and for using anaerobic digestion and in vessel composting to turn food waste into electricity and liquid soil conditioner. This has saved over 8,000 tonnes of CO2 and produced almost two million KW of electricity.
- Treading lightly - water - Emerson Retail Solutions UK for using EcoMESH, a unique mesh and water spray system to improve the performance of air cooled chillers, dry coolers and refrigeration plant. This reduced energy consumption by up to 44 per cent and consumes 10-25 per cent less water than other systems.
- Treading lightly - carbon - Edge Lighting Services Ltd for developing LED lighting that was suitable for Waitrose branches, resulting in a 42 per cent reduction in energy consumption at each branch. After an initial trial, it is now in all new branches and gradually being rolled out to all existing branches.
Notes to editors
*About the judges
- Lord Curry of Kirkharle CBE - British farmer and businessman who is the current chair of NFU Mutual and non-executive chair of the Better Regulation Executive and a member of the House of Lords.
- Dr Mark Ratnaragh - The College of Medicine.
- David Logan - Co-founder & Chair of Corporate Citizenship, who work with clients to develop their corporate responsibility.
- Steve Isaia - Environmental Consultant.
- Emma Tustain - WRAP, works on Federation House Commitment to reduce water.
- Susan Nisbet - WRAP, who has been instrumental in launching the Love Food Hate Waste Campaign www.lovefoodhatewaste.com and delivering the Courtauld Commitment.
- Paul King - CEO UK Green Building Council.
For further information, images and case studies including quotes from judges, please contact:
Jo Maish, Suzanne Hetherington or Hannah Chance
Waitrose Press Office
Telephone: 01344 825080