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Tesco, Sustainable Consumption Institute join Sustainability Consortium

December 12, 2011

ASU has announced that Tesco is joining The Sustainability Consortium, an independent group of global businesses, academics, governments and non-governmental organizations that work collaboratively to drive innovation in consumer product sustainability.

The Tesco-funded Sustainable Consumption Institute (SCI) at The University of Manchester also will become an academic member of the Consortium. Tesco joins 16 other European members that provide The Sustainability Consortium a strong foothold in the region.

Joining the consortium is a further boost to Tesco’s work on sustainability and comes after its commendation as the top green UK retailer by the internationally recognized Carbon Disclosure Project. By focusing on environmental and social sustainability in the supply chain, the consortium’s collaboration between Tesco and other global businesses will drive sustainable production and consumption in the consumer goods market. This partnership builds on the consortium’s recent opening of a European branch at Wageningen University & Research Centre in The Netherlands.

Tesco estimates that it saved £200 million in global energy costs last year by going green and aims to be a zero-carbon business by 2050. In addition to opening the world’s first zero-carbon supermarket2, Tesco has carbon footprinted over 1,100 products since 2008, currently the largest product footprinting project undertaken by any retailer.

“Successful collaboration between leading global businesses – whether they are retailers, wholesalers, suppliers or producers – will go a long way in helping companies reduce their carbon emissions and thereby reduce the carbon footprints of the products we sell," said Helen Fleming, Group Climate Change director. "This will help consumers make more sustainable choices about the products they buy. The Sustainability Consortium has a great opportunity to show the world that living greener lives can be attractive and affordable and that small changes really do make a big difference. We’re proud to be a member of the consortium and look forward to collaborating with the many other businesses and organizations.”

Professor Alistair Ulph, executive director of The University of Manchester’s Sustainable Consumption Institute said, “The SCI is looking forward to collaborating with the Sustainability Consortium on research projects where there are shared interests, such as developing product category sustainability profiles and a deeper understanding of how best to influence consumers to adopt more sustainable lifestyles. We are pleased to be the first UK university involved with the consortium and look forward to collaborative research with their business and academic partners.”

“We are pleased to welcome Tesco to The Sustainability Consortium,” said Bonnie Nixon, executive director of The Sustainability Consortium. “Tesco is one of many companies partnering with the consortium to make us a truly global organization. Their expertise and leadership in both the retail and sustainability community will be a great asset as we work towards delivering the science and tools to drive a new generation of sustainable products.”