Award for pro­duce com­pany

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Etbusiness Daily - By John Kralevich

LO­CAL fresh pro­duce sup­plier Pro­duce World has won a pres­ti­gious award for its in­no­va­tive ap­proach to sus­tain­abil­ity re­port­ing.

Its sys­tem, the first of its kind in the pro­duce sec­tor, pro­vides an on­line win­dow into the com­pany’s cor­po­rate re­spon­si­bil­ity key per­for­mance in­di­ca­tors, which is ac­ces­si­ble to any­one.

As part of a long-term pro­gramme of cor­po­rate so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity, Yax­ley-based Pro­duce World has in­vested in the Credit 360 sys­tem. This al­lows any­body to ac­cess key per­for­mance mea­sures across the com­pany’s busi­ness units in­clud­ing car­bon diox­ide (CO2) emis­sions, wa­ter and en­ergy us­age, ac­ci­dent fre­quency rate, and em­ployee turnover. The in­for­ma­tion pro­vided is un-edited and com­pletely trans­par­ent.

As a re­sult, Pro­duce World won the In­no­va­tive Re­port­ing cat­e­gory of the awards run by Eth­i­cal Cor­po­ra­tion as part of its Re­spon­si­ble Busi­ness Sum­mit. Com­pa­nies that won other cat­e­gories, or were highly com­mended, in­cluded global house­hold names such as L’Oreal, Pep­siCo, SAB Miller, Bri­tish Land and Green­peace.

Pro­duce World’s CEO Wil­liam Burgess said: “The award recog­nises our in­vest­ment over the past few years to im­prove the sus­tain­abil­ity of our busi­ness. It is es­pe­cially sat­is­fy­ing to be in­cluded along­side ma­jor brands, and shows what can be achieved by a rel­a­tively small com­pany on a ‘shoe­string’ bud­get.

“We are com­mit­ted to sus­tain­abil­ity, but not by sim­ply throw­ing money at the prob­lem.

“Some com­pa­nies would in­vest in a wind tur­bine, and think that they have done their bit. We haven’t gone down that route, but we be­lieve that the mea­sures we are tak­ing are much more long-term and will re­ally make a dif­fer­ence.”

The com­pe­ti­tion judges said: “This B2B com­pany is truly in­no­va­tive in pro­vid­ing reg­u­lar key cor­po­rate re­spon­si­bil­ity in­for­ma­tion to stake­hold­ers in a B2B en­vi­ron­ment. This ex­am­ple shows how com­pa­nies can be trans­par­ent to cus­tomers and has de­vel­oped a model that, if ap­plied to other sec­tors, could have trans­for­ma­tional ef­fects in terms of prove­nance and trace­abil­ity.”

Pro­duce World is unique in the fresh pro­duce in­dus­try in adopt­ing the Credit 360 sys­tem. To date it has only been used by blue chip cor­po­ra­tions such as John Lewis, Al­liance Boots and McDon­alds.

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