Over the past 30 years the Co-op have pioneered changes to Food Policy. In fact we have introduced a new way of doing business every year for the past 30 years and have encouraged other retailers to follow suit.

Wherever possible, we make bold ethical decisions and lead the way. Where we can’t, we make things as transparent as possible, so customers can make the best choices themselves.

With so much to choose from, here are a few of our top Food Policy highlights we’ve handpicked.


We are the first retailer to use consumer friendly nutrition labelling with HIGH, MEDIUM and LOW signposts on packaging.


We took a stand on animal testing and announce that no Co-op brand toiletries, household products, or their ingredients, have been tested on animals.


We are the first mainstream retailer to started selling ethically traded Cafedirect coffee – one of the world’s first Fairtrade products.


We became the first retailer to commit to front of pack nutrition labelling for fat and calories on all Co-op products.


We lead the industry by putting sensible drinking advice on own-brand wines and spirits, in addition to alcohol units already stated on the label.


We are the first retailer to be awarded the Cruelty Free International symbol on its range of health and beauty products which guarantees no animal testing on products.


Our Milk Chocolate was the world’s first own brand Fairtrade product launch.


We launched the UK’s first supermarket fairly traded wine – Co-op Fair Trade Chilean Carmenere.


We added calorie information to alcoholic drinks – the first to do so in the market.


All our own brand coffee becomes Fairtrade – the first for any retailer.


We become the only retailer to have both is household and health and beauty products independently certified by international Cruelty Free.


We moved all own branded fresh beef to UK sourced.

British 1


We launched the UK’s first Fairtrade wines from Argentina.


We transferred all our own brand shell eggs to free range – and in 2010 we moved all the egg ingredients to free range also!


We launched the UK’s first home compostable carrier bag.

Environment 2


We became the first retailer to graduate from WWF-UK FTN, meaning more than 95% of our wood and paper products come from sustainable sources.


We switched all of our bananas to Fairtrade.


Committed to British, we ensured all our key product ranges such as sandwiches, pies, pastries and chilled ready meals are all made using 100% British Chicken, Beef and Pork.

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We were the first retailer to switch our entire range of Own Brand Dilutable Drinks to no added sugar.


We became the world’s biggest convenience retailer of Fairtrade products.

The Co-operative Fairtrade - Growing Stories


All our own brand Easter Eggs became Fairtrade – the first of any supermarket.


Join the conversation! 6 Comments

  1. […] in such a short time. Sales continue to grow and Co-op is proud of the role we have played. Our list of accomplishments over the years goes on and on and we’re not slowing […]

  2. […] initiative and Fairtrade would not have become the household and worldwide brand it since has. Our list of accomplishments over the years goes on and on and it’s not slowing […]

  3. When can we expect a much wider appreciation food policy?

  4. 2015/2016 taking well valued pubs away from community’s the use and value them to turn into new stores and having dealings with unethical pubco’s, shame on you co op, when are you going to start reading all the bad national press you are getting and stop destroying communities


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