Staples is lone winner with sustainability

The retail and consumer packaged goods industry fared poorly in a recent global ranking of corporate sustainability leaders with the handful of standouts being Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Staples and Campbell Soup Company.

The ranking of 100 companies compiled by Corporate Knights, a media, research and investment advisory company, included only17 U.S. companies and only two retailers. Sweden’s H&M was ranked 64th and Staples was ranked 72nd.

“We’re honored to be named to the Global 100 Sustainability Index, recognizing us as one of the most sustainable corporations in the world,” said Mark Buckley, VP of environmental affairs at Staples. “As a company, we’re committed to making more sustainable choices internally and to offering our customers environmentally and socially responsible products and services, both in-store or online.”

The omission of other retailers, most notably sustainability leaders such as Kohl’s, Office Depot, Meijer and Walmart, is curious — especially considering other U.S. companies that were included in the ranking and are not normally associated with sustainability such as Monsanto, Duke Energy, Hess and Weyerhauser.

As for Staples, it highlighted its inclusion in the ranking with a press release and touted accomplishments such as a technology trade-in program, ink and toner recycling, packaging reductions and various initiatives to reduce CO2 emissions.

For more on what retailers can be doing with sustainability to improve profits, read what Elizabeth Sturcken, managing director, corporate partnerships EDF shared with Retailing Today.




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