Courtauld Commitment phase 2 helps deliver £3.1 billion in savings


The grocery sector has reduced food and packaging waste by 1.7 million tonnes under the second phase of the Courtauld Commitment, WRAP has revealed.

This equates to 4.8 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent.


WRAP noted that the key phase 2 results were:

  • Supply chain product and packaging waste target – traditional grocery product and packaging waste in the grocery supply chain was reduced 7.4 per cent, exceeding the 5 per cent target. Supply chain waste decreased by 217,000 tonnes per year in 2012 relative to the baseline year.
  • Packaging target – the carbon impact of grocery packaging was reduced by 10 per cent against a 10 per cent target. Grocery packaging weight also reduced by 10.7 per cent.
  • Household food and drink waste target – a 3.7 per cent absolute reduction in total household food waste was achieved (270,000) tonnes against a target of 4 per cent (92 per cent of the target was achieved).

When rising production, sales volumes and households are taken into account, relative reductions of 8.3 per cent of supply chain waste were achieved, 14.8 per cent in the carbon impact of packaging and 6.1 per cent in total household food waste have been achieved.

The cost and efficiency benefits of this are worth around £3.1 billion.

Packaging targets were met through innovation and optimisation of packaging that included lightweighting, use of recycled content, designing packaging with recyclability in mind and changing product formats to better accommodate consumer need.

WRAP chief executive Liz Goodwin said: “During the course of Courtauld 2, financial savings of around £3.1 billion were made, by signatories and their customers. These are impressive results.

“The final outcome of phase 2 shows how collaborative working achieves results that have financial benefits to the UK and deliver significant reductions in environmental impact. We know there is still more we can do and I’m delighted to see 50 leading retailers, brands and manufacturers signed up to the Courtauld Commitment 3 showing their continued commitment.”

Resources Minister Dan Rogerson said: “Everyone has a role to play in reducing waste and I want to see more businesses helping consumers to waste less food and save money. We have made great strides in reducing food and packaging waste and I’m delighted with the progress so far. There’s still a long way to go and we will continue to work closely with food retailers and manufacturers to cut waste even further.”