Tesco strengthens environmental standards for its growers with adoption of global LEAF Marque Standard
30 September 2021
- Roll-out of LEAF Marque will improve environmental standards across 14,000 growers globally
- All UK growers to achieve LEAF Marque certification by the end of 2022, global supply chain to be completed by 2025.
Tesco has announced a strengthening in the environmental standards required by its 14,000 fresh produce growers, by implementing the LEAF Marque environmental assurance scheme across its entire global produce supply chain.
The retailer will ensure all UK growers are certified by the end of 2022 and will begin the process of certifying the rest of its global grower base from 2023, with the aim of completing the transformation by 2025. The scale of the roll-out is unprecedented among LEAF’s existing supply base.
The LEAF Marque, run by global farming organisation LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming), requires farms to take a whole business approach to delivering more sustainable, climate positive farming through:
- Resilient and diverse businesses
- Increased implementation of regenerative practices
- Improved positive action for climate change through energy efficiency and reduced carbon footprints
- Improved soil management to enhance soil quality and soil health
- Improved implementation of effectiveIPM solutions for crop health and protection
- Circular approaches to resource use and waste management
- Improved management of water use and water quality
- Enriched diversity of native habitats and species
The relationship represents a significant part of Tesco’s approach to restoring nature in food production. In partnership with WWF, the retailer has committed to halving the environmental impact of the average shopping basket, and the requirements under the LEAF Marque Standard are expected to accelerate progress towards that goal by strengthening environmental farming practices within growing regions around the world.
Ashwin Prasad, Chief Product Officer at Tesco said:
“In this decade of action on climate and nature, it’s vital we do all we can to produce food more sustainably. The implementation of the LEAF marque Standard will help drive environmental improvements across thousands of growers and suppliers, both here in the UK and globally. But we can’t achieve the transformational change needed alone – we’re calling on the whole of the food industry to join us in raising environmental standards to ensure the food we eat is produced sustainably.”
Caroline Drummond, LEAF Chief Executive said:
“This is a hugely significant and transformative moment in LEAF’s 30-year history. Tesco’s commitment will bring real and lasting changes in food production and offer assurance to consumers that their purchasing decisions are having a positive impact on our climate. We are extremely excited as we embark on this landmark relationship. Together, we will continue to “raise the bar” for the good of our planet and future generations.’’
Notes to editors
LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming) is the leading organisation delivering and promoting Climate Positive, thriving, resilient and exemplar agro-ecological farming at an increasingly global level. Working with farmers, the food industry, scientists, environmentalists, teachers, young people and consumers, we are looking at new ways to deliver productivity and prosperity among our farmers, enrich the environment and engage young people and society in a valuable and meaningful way.
LEAF promotes Integrated Farm Management (IFM), a whole farm business approach that delivers more sustainable farming. IFM uses the best of modern technology and traditional methods to deliver prosperous farming that enriches the environment and engages local communities.
LEAF Demonstration Farms are commercial farms which show the beneficial practices of IFM to a broad range of audiences through organised visits. They communicate an understanding of IFM in order to encourage uptake by farmers, support from the industry and political awareness of sustainable food and farming. The network of LEAF Demonstration Farms includes a range of farm businesses across England and Scotland. They work alongside the LEAF Innovation Centres.
LEAF Innovation Centres are research organisations whose work supports the research, evidence, development and promotion of Integrated Farm Management. They investigate and communicate practices which underpin the continual improvement of the Integrated Farm Management approach to help deliver more sustainable food and farming.
The LEAF Marque is a global environmental assurance system recognising more sustainably farmed products. It is based on the sustainable farming principles of Integrated Farm Management (IFM), which covers areas such as soil and water management, pollution control, crop health, animal welfare, community engagement, energy efficiency and landscape and nature conservation. LEAF Marque businesses are independently assessed and certified against the principles of IFM.
LEAF Open Farm Sunday offers a chance for farmers to open their gates and welcome people onto their farms to discover the world of farming.
LEAF Education provides teachers with curriculum focused training, tools and resourcesto help them deliver high-quality learning experiences about farming. It also helps farmers navigate the world of education and supports them in delivering inspiring and engaging on-farm and in-classroom activities.
LEAF Education manages a number of industry and educational initiatives, including Farmer Time, Access to Farms, CEVAS (Countryside Educational Visits Accreditation Scheme),Countryside Classroom, Chef on the Farm and LEAF Open Farm School Days.
For further information about LEAF, please contact