Marks and Spencer has put health at the centre of its new sustainability programme, with new targets to increase sales of healthy products in its range and plans to incentivise customers to make healthier choices.
Plan A 2025 is a wide-ranging ethical and environmental strategy that can be boiled down into three topline goals: supporting 1,000 communities, helping 10 million people live happier, healthier lives and converting the retailer into a zero-waste business.
The three-pillar plan – wellbeing, transforming lives and communities and caring for the planet – is “designed to tackle the big issues facing retailers, consumer businesses and society today”, M&S said.
By 2022, at least half the company’s global food sales will come from “healthier products”. Within the next couple of years, there will also be new projects to “incentivise and reward” customers for making healthy choices. By the end of next year, all single portion snacks, confectionery and ice cream will be less than 250 calories.
There are also new targets covering everything from food waste and packaging to carbon emissions and community volunteering.
Mike Barry, director of Plan A at M&S said the original strategy, launched a decade ago, has given the firm “the confidence to embrace a sustainable future. [Plan A 2025] will force us to address questions for which we don’t have all the answers to yet and collaborate with others to drive true change across consumer goods industries,” he added.
M&S will report on progress every year in June. The commitments will be assured by independent auditors and M&S’ own audit team.
On 19th June, Footprint Premium will unpick M&S’s new sustainability commitments, and assess whether the retailer has raised the bar as it did back in 2007 with Plan A.