East of England Co-op wins national BITC honour for ‘Sourced Locally’ scheme

Kevin Warden, left, and Roger Grosvenor, right, of the East of England Co-op, receive the Asda Enter

Kevin Warden, left, and Roger Grosvenor, right, of the East of England Co-op, receive the Asda Enterprise Growth Award at Business in the Community's Responsible Business Gala from Allan Edwards of Asda. - Credit: Archant

The East of England Co-operative Society has been named among the award winners at Business in the Community’s 2015 Responsible Business Gala in London.

Business in the Community, the Prince of Wales’s business charity, stages the annual event as the culmination of its Responsible Business Awards, to celebrate how businesses in the UK and abroad are addressing social and environmental issues.

East of England Co-op received the Asda Enterprise Growth Award which recognises businesses that support and do business with small and medium enterprises to drive local economic growth.

The society was recognised for its Sourced Locally initiative which was created to source products and develop sustainable partnership with local producers across Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex.

Since its launch in 2007, more than £34million has been ploughed back into local communities through payments to suppliers, with a total of 140 local producers now on board and supplying the society’s stores with more than 2,700 products.

Roger Grosvenor, executive officer – retail at the East of England Co-op, said: “We celebrate local food in our stores every day, bringing locally produced food and drink direct from over 140 farmers and producers to the shelves of our stores.

“We’ve saved food miles, cut down on waste, encouraged local suppliers to work together, launched ‘Deli to Go’ which offers 100% locally supplied deli products and created new outlets for local businesses.

Most Read

“We believe every encouragement should be given to those who work so hard and with such passion and dedication to bring great tasting food and drink to our tables.”

Allan Edwards, senior director for public affairs and corporate responsibility at Asda, added: “The East of England Co-operative stood out because of their passion, uniqueness and engagement, which clearly runs through the business, to deliver strong and sustainable local communities which the SME supply side is fully benefiting from.”