A Cotswolds supermarket is set to become the UK’s first major retailer to make it mandatory for suppliers to tell shoppers where their ingredients are sourced from.
To underline its commitment, the Midcounties Co-operative in Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire, will make it mandatory for suppliers to prove and publish where they source their ingredients from in a bid to deliver consumer transparency through the food chain.
Today, Wednesday, February 27th, the food retailer will actively delist every food and drink brand across its entire ‘Best of our Counties’ range that refuses to have its ingredient supply chain audited and published for public scrutiny.
The event will mark a major milestone in the journey of Happerley, the organisation working on behalf of the whole UK food industry and all consumers to develop and implement a means to secure provenance honesty and transparency, and empower the consumer to know the journey of their food.
Happerley QR codes will be available at point of sale across the store’s entire Best of our Counties range, ahead of a wider roll-out across hundreds of stores.
Those in attendance include Adam Henson, renowned TV presenter, author and farmer, Phil Ponsonby, CEO of Midcounties Co-operative, Matthew Rymer, CEO and founder of Happerley, and Peter Jinman OBE, Chairman of Happerley’s Advisory Board.
Phil Ponsonby said: “Transparency is a core value of ours and we are delighted to have supported Happerley from the start and believe this project will grow and grow. We are 100 per cent committed to it.”
Taking place from 10.30am to 3.30pm, a tour of the supermarket will be followed up with the unveiling of the new provenance technology.
There will also be a chance to meet participating food and drink producers and a panel of authoritative guest speakers will conduct a Q&A covering the eight points of consumer interest; communities, sustainability, packaging, welfare, environment, energy, nutrition, and education.
Matthew Rymer added: “Food and drink have become one of the most opaque industries where disingenuous branding, marketing and selective truths disconnect consumers from the truth they deserve. Consumers increasingly want to know the impact of their food and drink purchases and the whole industry can benefit by delivering a means to empower the consumer to know the journey of their food.
“It is the hope of our board that Happerley will now become the credible and trusted currency of truth across the entire industry. Moves to take the marque into an independent, not for profit entity are now underway.”