Our Parent Company, Compass Group UK&I, Makes Progress Towards Its Commitment to Climate Net Zero

27 January 2022

Compass Group UK & Ireland has announced a number of systemic changes - which demonstrate progress on its journey to Climate Net Zero by 2030. These include:

  • Banning air freight of fresh fruit and vegetable produce. The ban will see a focus on further increasing the use of local and seasonal products. Compass chefs have been focusing on reworking menus to accommodate these changes.
  • Using free range eggs (shell and liquid) in the UK and introducing white eggs into the supply chain. This move exceeds the previous target of committing to cage free eggs by 2025.*
  • Removing Marine Conservation Society rated 4 and 5 seafood from its UK supply chain.

These measures have been led by Compass’ procurement division – Foodbuy. It now has a dedicated sustainability team who are reviewing its supply chain and looking at how Compass can support suppliers to become more sustainable, with a focus on regenerative agriculture and a switch from animal to plant-based proteins, as well as further enhancing local and seasonal sourcing.

Anne Simonnet, Head of Sustainability and Compliance at Foodbuy, commented; “Fruit and vegetable produce is our second biggest buying category, so to have none of these items air freighted is significant. We have worked hard to find suppliers that are closer to home - with no compromise on quality. The actions we have taken on eggs and fish are also important steps and we will continue to engage with our partners and suppliers to reduce emissions and focus on animal welfare.”

Making progress towards its Climate Net Zero commitment Compass has:

  • Received a commendation of best practice for Net Zero targets, from the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
  • Encouraged chefs to reformulate menus; creating low carbon options that draw on local, seasonal and plant-based ingredients and consciously look to reduce food waste. The success of this approach was highlighted by Compass’ QEII Future of Food event menu, which saw a reduction from 11.8kg of CO2e per portion to 4.02kg of CO2e per portion (66%).
  • Launched a milk pilot to support engagement with over 500 farmers; dairy representing 10% of Compass Group UK&I’s footprint.
  • On track to switch to 100% renewable electricity within managed sites.
  • Launched electric vehicle policy to reach 100% electric fleet cars by 2024 at the latest.
  • Partnered with Oxford University’s LEAP programme to introduce eco-labelling.
  • Removed around 142 million items of single-use plastics.
  • Partnered with Incredible Edible to support its work with communities.
  • Launched an apprenticeship programme alongside Marcus Wareing, with a bespoke sustainability module.
  • Catered and cleaned for COP26, with a clear food strategy, footprinted menus and a commitment to using learnings as a legacy for positive change.
  • Engaged with hundreds of clients, stakeholders, suppliers and employees to share ideas, knowledge and best practice.

Carolyn Ball, Director for Delivery of Net Zero, Compass Group UK & Ireland, commented: “We must match our intent with the urgency to act and we would like to thank our partners, suppliers, colleagues and clients for supporting us on the journey so far. Together we will, and we must, continue to be a catalyst for transformative change.”  

Watch the Net Zero update here - Carolyn Ball – Compass Group UK & Ireland Climate Net Zero Journey