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Asda rolls out LEAF Marque certification across fresh produce

Asda has begun to roll out LEAF Marque certification across its UK fresh produce supply base in a move to strengthen its environmental standards.

The retailer's fruit and vegetable growers will achieve LEAF Marque certification by May 2024, with worldwide suppliers certified by the end of 2025.

The environmental assurance system provides independent, third-party verification around core areas of sustainable farming practice.

It offers growers a framework to help them monitor their performance, identify strengths and weaknesses and set targets for improvement across the whole farm.

Asda said the improvements made across the supply chain would help it move towards its goal of being carbon net zero by 2040.

Jane Berry, vice president and managing director of IPL, who source produce on behalf of Asda, said: “We have always known that we couldn’t go on this journey alone.

“Our approach to sustainability is based on the firm belief that protecting the environment and saving people money, go hand in hand.

"We know that the climate and ecosystem emergency is at the forefront of our customers’ minds, but many are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis.

“We are determined to aim high and do all we can to support them during this time, without losing sight of our responsibilities to offer greener choices that don’t cost the earth.”

Clare Mike, director of business development at LEAF, added that the certification was a "powerful catalyst for change".

“With sustainability becoming increasingly important to consumers and the green agenda taking root, it’s great to see Asda setting ambitious goals," she said.

"Overwhelmingly, their willingness to embrace change and adapt to challenges signals a time of transformation and positive change.

"Together with the determination and commitment of their growers, we are making real and lasting differences to addressing the climate emergency and the sustainability of the world’s farming and food systems.”

At the end of 2021, LEAF announced a target for 85% of all UK fruit and vegetables to be grown more sustainably to LEAF Marque Standards.


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