Health and Safety

Last Updated: 23/06/2017

Caring for people every day

Looking after the health and safety of our customers and colleagues is a responsibility we all share at Tesco. Our priority is to run our global operations with the utmost concern for the safety of the people and communities we serve, and those who work for or with us.

In the different businesses we face different legal obligations on safety. These are the minimum criteria that we comply with, but we shouldn’t settle for that. With thousands of people interacting with our business every day, our Safety Standards must be the very best.

For our colleagues and customers, it should always be a given that Tesco is a safe place to work and to shop – they would rightly expect nothing less. Developing and maintaining a culture where safety is inherent in everything we do means that we are trusted to look after people and treat them as they’d want to be treated.

Through consideration of the safety of our customers and people in all business decisions, we aim to make Tesco the safest place to shop and work in retail.

Our approach

A strategy of external certification is being followed for key parts of our business. Our UK distribution business was re-certified in 2016 by the British Standards Institution against OHSAS 18001 which is the industry recognised standard for occupational health and safety. This certification covers all of our distribution operations in UK and Ireland. We have also achieved the same certification in Thailand where 5 of our main distribution centres have been awarded OHSAS 18001. In 2017 we began a project to extend the certification to our European distribution operation starting in Poland.

Recognising achievements in people safety is also important. In 2016 the UK Tesco Distribution business came first in the Safety Training category of the Logistics and Supply Chain Excellence Awards for their “Safety First” programme that has been delivered to all UK and Republic of Ireland distribution colleagues.

Accountability for people safety risk management sits at the top of the business and is led by our Chief Executive who facilitates an annual presentation to the Executive Committee. Through the Group (and each business unit’s) compliance committee there is an annual report on health and safety. All serious incidents are escalated to the compliance committee and other key senior directors and managers should they occur. As well as the important visibility of avoidable incidents this is the mechanism by which we search for the root cause and put in place steps to prevent recurrence.

Technical support in occupational safety and health, as well as fire safety engineering throughout Tesco is provided by specialists within the People Safety Department. Business policies and procedures that affect people safety risk are managed by professionals within this team, who have post graduate qualifications in safety as well as being Chartered Members of the Institute of the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.

2016/17 performance

Frequency rates for customer injuries (per million transactions at the checkout)

  • Tesco UK and ROI: 21.6
  • Central Europe: 1.4
  • Malaysia: 1.3
  • Thailand: 0.4

Frequency rates for work related injuries to retail colleagues (per 10,000 head count)

Lost time more than 1 day

Tesco UK and ROI: 37.3

Central Europe: 51.4

Malaysia: 16.6

Thailand: 9.8
No lost time or less than 1 day

Tesco UK and ROI: 171.5

Central Europe: 50.4

Malaysia: 3.9

Thailand: 8.1

Frequency rates for work related injuries to distribution colleagues (per 10,000 head count)

Lost time more than 1 day

Tesco UK and ROI: 50.7

Central Europe: 93.2

Malaysia: -

Thailand: 6.1

No lost time or less than 1 day

Tesco UK and ROI: 188.7

Central Europe: 132.6

Malaysia: 6.5

Thailand: 61.7