Nutrition, Health & Wellbeing

We recognise the important role we can play across John Lewis and Waitrose to help our customers, Partners, suppliers and the communities in which we operate, lead healthier, happier lives.

nutrition, health and wellbeing Internal business report

Our Strategy

Supporting customers, Partners and communities to live happier, healthier lives

The demands on people's time and the impact on their lifestyle is increasingly leading to a rise in societal health challenges, such as rising obesity and mental health issues. A healthy, varied diet is fundamental to a healthy, happy life but the way we currently consume and produce food has caused rising levels of obesity, diet-related ill health as well as driving nature and biodiversity loss and it is a significant contributor to climate change. The good news is a diet that is good for people is also good for the planet and spending time in green space or bringing nature into everyday life can benefit both mental and physical wellbeing and resilience - which is why our strategy is centred around ‘Healthy for nature for a happier world’.


As trusted experts in nutrition and health and wellbeing, we aim to inspire our customers to make optimum choices by providing healthier products, relevant services, information, and inspiration.


In order to ensure an improved and balanced offering, we will continue to drive positive change by supporting government product reformulation programmes, consumer health related initiatives, and working collaboratively with research organisations and NGOs.


In 2021, the John Lewis Partnership Board established a board-level Ethics & Sustainability Committee, recognising the importance of our responsibility to our Partners, the environment and those with whom we build strong relationships, including suppliers, customers and communities. The terms of reference for this Committee state that its purpose is to: “assist the Board in fulfilling its responsibilities for setting the Ethics & Sustainability strategy in accordance with our Partnership’s Purpose and Values and ensuring that this strategy is embedded into [our] operations”.

The impact of sustainability and risk to the business is available here and more details on our board can be found here.

Defining Healthy Choices


We launched our Good Health Logo in 2017 as a means of easily and consistently highlighting healthier Waitrose products to our customers. There’s currently over 2,000 Good Health food and drinks in our range


In order to carry the logo, products must:

  • Have at least one nutrition or health claim
  • Products must not be HFSS (High, Fat, Sugar, Salt) according to the government nutrient profile score
  • Products must have no red traffic lights, except: 
    • Red traffic lights for naturally occurring fats e.g. nuts, seeds, avocados, milk and fish 
    • Amber saturated fat traffic lights are only permitted when there are no added ingredients that contribute saturated fat.
    • Red and amber traffic lights are only allowed for naturally occurring sugars 


We also track total food sales (branded and own-label) using the Nutrient Profile Model (NPM) which is used by teams across the business for our range planning and healthier propositions. 

Tracking Progress

We will publicly disclose progress on an annual basis on our website and in our annual Ethics and Sustainability report. 





2023 Progress


Increase sales of healthy* food and drink, as a proportion of total food sales

Own brand food and drinks (excluding alcohol) 

58% (2022)


65% by 2026

Proportion of protein sales that are plant based**

Branded and own brand food and drinks 



High Fat, Sugar or Salt (HFSS) sales (NPM model) Branded and own brand food and drinks (excluding alcohol) 60%
60% n/a

*As defined by our Good Health criteria 

**Categories in scope of WWF basket metric

Improving The Nutritional Value Of Our Products


Nutrition is embedded in our product development process through our Nutrition and Health product policy which outlines nutrient targets for Waitrose products. We are committed to improving our products through new product development and innovation, and reformulation by increasing fruit, vegetable, fibre and wholegrains in products while reducing portion sizes, saturated fat, sugar and salt. 


We also pledge to enable customers to increase their veg consumption through Veg Power’s Peas Please commitment by increasing the amount of veg in the main meal products we sell as well as in the main meal recipes in our magazines and weekly newspaper - Waitrose Weekend. We plan to inspire customers by championing veg through our events, Cookery Schools and in store activities. More info can be found here.


Our ongoing reformulation programme also aims to gradually reduce calories, saturated fat, sugar and salt content over time, where taste or quality are not compromised. We support the ambition of the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities reformulation programmes and allow them to publish our data when reporting on reformulation progress. 


Following the introduction of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL) we reformulated the majority of our impacted own brand products and achieved a 77% reduction in the sales weighted average of sugar sold between 2016 and 2020. So that we can always offer our customers a choice, we made the decision not to reformulate a small number of products.


We also aim to inspire customers through new product development and innovation. Our Holistic Living ranges provide customers with choices throughout our store to meet their lifestyle needs and includes our Thrive, Gut Health, PlantLiving, GoVeggie and EatFlexi products. We launched EatFlexi in 2022 - a perfect mix of meat and plant proteins to inspire customers who want to eat more vegetables. 





21/22 Progress


Increase the tonnes of veg sold from meal solutions by 2024 

Own brand meal solutions 

17  tonnes 

17 tonnes 


Meet the maximum 2024 salt targets

Own brand 




Meet the maximum 2024 calorie targets

Own brand 




Reduction in saturated fat

Own brand categories contributing most to saturated fat in customer’s basket 


10% reduction 

10% reduction 

Reduction in sugar 

Own brand categories contributing most to sugar in customer’s baskets 


10% reduction 

10% reduction 

Product Policies

Our product policies are reviewed on an annual basis. They are in place to ensure we are keeping up to date with the latest nutrition science and customer preferences.

For example, 

  • Hydrogenated vegetable oils were removed from Waitrose own brand products in 2006 and are not permitted in any Waitrose foods. We now focus on the reduction of saturated fats from products. 
  • Artificial flavourings and colours were removed from own brand products in 2009 and are not permitted in any Waitrose foods.

Helping Customers Make Informed Choices

We believe in being transparent with our customers and providing clear information to help them make informed choices. We were the first retailer to use the Government's front of pack traffic light scheme in 2005 and we have continued to follow the guidelines for our packaging since, providing customers with both informative and clear nutrition labelling. All Waitrose food and drink are required to have front of pack nutrition labels with few exceptions.


All foods must be labelled with nutrition analysis as sold, with the exception of foods that must be cooked or reheated by the customer before eating, as we believe this is most useful for the customer.  Products which must be cooked or reheated before eating must be labelled with nutrition analysis as consumed per 100g and nutrition must be declared on ‘edible portion’.


We require all products to declare analytical nutrition data except few items which can use theoretical data including canned jars of fruit or veg, raw, fresh and frozen fruit and veg and unprocessed fresh and frozen meat.


We carry out surveillance testing annually to ensure nutritional information presented on pack is accurate and additional testing is required for products carrying nutrition or health claims.

Pricing, Promotions and Incentives


We strongly believe in providing great tasting food with good values while also offering customers good value for money. Our value range, Waitrose Essentials, is our largest and healthiest sub brand with over 350 Good Health lines. 


myWaitrose members with a Vitality health or life insurance plan can get 25% cashback on Waitrose products with the Good Health logo.

Responsible Marketing

Our marketing policy states:

  • Food and drink advertising is targeted at over 18 year olds
  • Do not use children’s characters on less healthy foods, exclude celebration lines and some seasonal lines 
  • Use appropriate portion sizes
  • Provide nutrition information on all recipes.

Collaborating Across The Sector

We believe in collaborating with stakeholders across the sector to drive positive change, share learnings and discuss complex issues. We are currently working with the following partners, mainly focussing on healthy and sustainable diets:


Health Across The John Lewis Partnership

Our nutrition, health and wellbeing policy expands across the full Partnership, including both Waitrose and John Lewis.

Case Study

30 plant points challenge

To mark this year’s Healthy Eating Week, we created a range of awareness-raising activities aimed at engaging Partners and customers alike.

As part of this initiative, we organised a 30 plant points challenge open to all Partners across the Partnership.

Healthy Eating Week is an annual campaign organised by the British Nutrition Foundation that encourages people to eat and drink more healthily and get more active. We are proud to be a regular supporter of the event.

The campaign is primarily aimed at schools and workplaces and, this year, the John Lewis Partnership had more employee sign-ups than any other organisation. We were also the only participating national retailer.

We engaged our Partners with the Foundation’s Healthy Eating Week-themed content, such as factsheets and recipe inspiration, and inspired customers through activities such as a feature in our magazine, Waitrose Food, that provided tips and advice on how to eat 30 plants a week.

The article, and our Partner plant points challenge, were based on research that may suggest eating at least 30 different plants per week is good for a person’s health and wellbeing.

The fun challenge saw Partners record the number of plant points they scored throughout the week. Across the entire Partnership, our Wellbeing Champions shared recipes and inspiration, created displays in Partner Dining Rooms, and organised raffles and quizzes that gave Partners the chance to win healthy prizes.

In total, 2,868 plant points were recorded, with 59% of Partners who took part achieving the 30 plant points target.

The success of this initiative, with activities designed to engage both customers and Partners, has motivated us to look for similar opportunities in future that encourage everyone to be healthy for nature for a happier world.



"In 2023, the team at Waitrose brilliantly brought to life the principles and resources of Healthy Eating Week with a suite of activities to inform, engage and support their full team. Their commitment and creativity made this one of the standout events of the entire week."

Elaine Hindal
Chief Executive, British Nutrition Foundation