The report sets out clear benchmarks for judging the credibility of supermarket attempts to reduce air freight emissions, including:

  • Placing work on aviation in an overarching environmental strategy that focuses at least as much effort on bigger greenhouse gas hotspots than air freight
  • Nurturing open and transparent partnerships for development, especially in the poorest parts of the world
  • Avoiding ‘carbon hypocrisy’, where air freighted produce is replaced with more greenhouse gas-intensive substitutes that have travelled fewer ‘food miles’
  • Tackling the aspects of air freight that are most widely agreed to be a problem through improved planning
  • Actively supporting government intervention to reduce market barriers to sustainable behaviour.

It also highlights the need for retailers to address wider environmental issues besides climate change, such as water scarcity, waste and biodiversity; develop measurable indicators of poverty reduction in communities that supply their products, and bear the costs of external accreditation for high labour standards; and work actively with their customers to challenge potentially unsustainable expectations that most fresh products will be constantly available throughout the year.

This work was made possible by funding from the Network for Social Change.

ISBN: 978-0-9549218-2-8

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