“Talk is cheap” in BRC’s Climate Action Roadmap

Friday 13th November 2020

Head of food and drink at Gordons, Mark Jones, has been quoted in trade press responding to news that the British Retail Consortium has set a target for net zero emissions in the UK retail sector by 2040, under its Climate Action Roadmap.

Speaking to grocery retail trade publication The Grocer, Mark said:

“The BRC’s aims are laudable, but talk is cheap and there is no real accountability. Many of the retailers who have signed up to the pledge were already taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint. But for some, taking such steps is not entirely altruistic. Change was coming.

“Retailers knew that if they do not act to reduce their emissions they would face regulatory intervention. Sadly, however, there are different ways of categorising emissions under BRC’s scheme and then there’s the fact the retailer’s supply chain will make up the majority of the emissions so collecting data and reporting will be difficult.

“We already know from the Oxfam International Supermarkets Scorecard, which scores supermarkets on their processes to prevent unfair treatment of workers, that it takes large retailers a long, long time to have adequate procedures in place to demonstrate compliance. And that is where there is a legal requirement, under the Modern Slavery Act, to report.

“Accountability is needed if BRC’s goals are to be achieved.”

You can read The Grocer’s article here.