Tesco gets suppliers collaborating on carbon emissions online

Tesco has created an online hub for its suppliers to collaborate on reducing their carbon emissions as part of its target to reduce its supply chain carbon footprint by 30% by 2020.

Working with an online community of sustainability professionals, 2degrees, it has set up a Tesco Carbon Reduction Knowledge Hub and is encouraging its suppliers to engage and collaborate with each other more effectively to share best practice and find solutions to challenges, without raising costs or wasting time.

According to Tesco, its overall supply chain footprint is at least 10 times greater than its direct footprint, which is why it is determined to work in partnership with suppliers to reduce emissions.

The new hub allows its suppliers to talk to each other and share learnings within the supply chain and is said to be a step beyond the traditional retailer-supplier relationship.

It has been piloted for six months with a few of Tesco’s key suppliers and has been expanded with over 200 suppliers joining the hub. It is designed to provide peer-to-peer learning for Tesco’s suppliers, equipping them with useful ideas and tools such as webinars, case studies and forum discussions to help them reduce carbon emissions. Issues discussed range from voltage optimisation, waste contracts to refrigeration energy loss and on-site energy generation.

The Knowledge Hub is run and facilitated by 2degrees and is exclusive to Tesco suppliers. Tesco is also involved in the online discussions, sharing its expertise and experience to help drive carbon emissions though the supply chain.

To date over 85% of members are reported to have attended or downloaded webinars; over 30% of members have participated in 30+ specific problem solving discussions; 500+ case studies and documents have been downloaded and over 75% have found solutions to other problems within other 2degrees working groups.

Martin Chilcott, founder and CEO of 2degrees, said: “Our work with Tesco is a fabulous example of how the 2degrees’ community (a special blend of social media and programme management) can deliver levels of collaboration and problem-solving within a company’s supply-chain which is unsurpassed. The Tesco Knowledge Hub on 2degrees runs 24/7, day-in-day-out, providing Tesco and its suppliers with easy access to vital expertise and peer-to-peer insights on how to reduce carbon and costs.”

Andrew Hill, climate change manager, Tesco, said: “The 2degrees Knowledge Hub has worked really well and we are looking forward to rolling out the programme to many more of our UK suppliers.

“Tesco is leading the way in sustainable best practice, by finding solutions to real-life problems and sharing knowledge and innovation with our suppliers to reduce costs both financially and to the environment. We are very excited about developing the partnership with 2degrees in the future.”

“2degrees will be working with Tesco to help bring on board more supplier members, build a larger library of information within the Hub, evolve the programme of activities to cover more suppliers’ requests and help develop a series of offline events.”