- Lidl GB commits to increasing the environmental standards of its entire British fresh produce supplier base through the LEAF Marque environmental assurance scheme
- Move will see all Lidl’s fresh produce suppliers achieve robust certification of more sustainable, nature-based farming practices
- Lidl continues with global commitment to biodiversity enhancement and sustainable water management in partnership with GLOBAL G.A.P
Lidl GB has announced that it will be taking the environmental standards of its fresh produce suppliers to the next level of sustainability excellence through the LEAF Marque environmental assurance scheme. The move will see its entire British fresh produce supplier base achieving LEAF Marque certification by the end of 2023.
LEAF Marque is a leading global environmental assurance system, run by global farming organisation LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming), recognising more sustainably farmed products. Certified businesses currently operate in 21 countries worldwide and deliver more regenerative and nature-based farming through:
- Implementing regenerative farming practices
- More sustainable soil and water management
- Reducing carbon emissions through greater energy efficiency
- More circular approaches to waste management and reducing plastic use
- Enhancing biodiversity and nature conservation
Speaking on the announcement, Lidl GB’s Head of Responsible Sourcing and Ethical Trade at Lidl GB, Amali Bunter, said “Sustainability has been core to the Lidl business model for many years. We firmly believe it is our responsibility, through innovation, investment, and active leadership, to build a bright, sustainable future – for our business, our farmer suppliers, the people we interact with and our planet.
“New patterns of production and consumption are emerging across Great Britain, reflecting global geopolitical uncertainty, resource availability and consumer preferences. As a leading food retailer, we recognise the demand we place on our agricultural resources and the influence we have on our suppliers’ practices.
“Our partnership with LEAF builds on the ambitions of our sustainability strategy “to Make Good Food Accessible to Everyone” which sets out clear goals around reducing carbon emissions across our supply chains, minimising food loss from farm to fork, supporting more circular farming systems which protect and enhance our precious ecosystems and sourcing all our products in a way that respects the environment. It also supports our wider global ambitions as we partner with GLOBAL G.A.P to promote farm-level biodiversity in international fruit and vegetable production. Together with our valued suppliers, we look forward to working hard and smart to deliver tangible action to continually improve environmental standards throughout our value chain.”
LEAF CEO, Caroline Drummond, added: “This is a vital time for sustainable farming. Farmers are on the front line of climate change solutions – reducing carbon emissions, building healthier and more productive soils, delivering better air and water quality and enhancing biodiversity. LEAF Marque certification is one of the most effective frameworks for accelerating incremental improvements at an individual farm level, which collectively are driving profound reforms in more climate positive food production across the globe.
“LEAF has a 30-year heritage in working at a grass-roots level. We are a practical, farmer-led organisation working in partnership with forward looking farmers to achieve a shared vision of a more productive, resilient, and nature-based farming and food system.
“Some 45% of UK produced fruit and vegetables are already grown on LEAF Marque certified businesses and we have made a public commitment to almost doubling this over the next five years. It is fantastic to see Lidl committing to LEAF Marque across its entire UK fresh produce supply chain and it brings us a step closer to achieving this ambition. Sustainability is mission critical for retailers and they have a huge role to play in leading the green agenda, putting environmental responsibility at the heart of their strategic and operational goals. This bold, concrete action being taken by Lidl sends a very clear message of leadership, determination, and vision. We will work at speed and at scale to make change happen.”
About Lidl GB
Since establishing itself in Great Britain in 1994, Lidl GB has experienced continuous growth and today has over 26,000 employees, over 880 stores and 13 distribution centres in England, Scotland and Wales.
As part of the Schwarz retail group, Lidl is one of Europe’s leading organisations in the food retail industry. The supermarket, which has more than 341,000 employees globally, currently operates approximately 11,550 stores and more than 200 warehouses and distribution centres in 30 countries.
The supermarket takes pride in providing its customers with the highest quality products at the lowest possible prices throughout Great Britain, from Kirkwall to the Isle of Wight. Social responsibility and sustainability are at the core of the company's daily operations, with the company placing a strong emphasis on its responsibility for people, society, and the environment. Lidl GB is passionate about working with British producers and sources two thirds of its products from British suppliers.
The Schwarz Group, which operates worldwide as a retail group, generated a turnover of €125.3 billion in the financial year 2020.
For more information about Lidl GB visit https://corporate.lidl.co.uk/
For more information on our sustainability report visit https://corporate.lidl.co.uk/sustainability
About LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming)
- 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.
- 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 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.