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Footprint Forum: Ethics in Education in association with TUCO supported by Fairtrade
January 29, 2016 @ 3:00 pm - 5:30 pm
The attitude towards ethical marques has shifted over the last 3 years. Although accreditations remain an important feature in the sustainability landscape businesses approach to them has shifted.
The attitude towards ethical marques has shifted over the last 3 years. Although accreditations remain an important feature in the sustainability landscape, business's approach to them has shifted.
Footprint Forum convened in March of 2011 to discuss “Preparing for a change in the ethical landscape” Much of what was predicted at this Forum has since been realised; short of the amalgamation of a number of marques that seem to be competing yet offering the same thing.
Whilst many companies value the independent assurance, consumer recognition and supply chain connections that certification schemes offer, some argue that ethical marques are no more than a box-ticking exercise culminating in competitive advantage. Others say the organisations that manage the accreditation process are too big and have become unwieldy businesses hungry to cover gigantic running costs, with too little benefit filtering through to the producer – whilst many others are able to engage in the brand-building stories and deeper impact that independent certification offers. Also, some of the larger operators in the foodservice and hospitality arena believe they can have a greater impact on the sustainability of their supply chains through their own actions, whilst effecting much greater fiscal benefits to their suppliers.
But is this something that is viable to everyone and are these specific approaches missing the holistic view that independent certification schemes offer? We have seen events such as the horse meat scandal clearly demonstrate the value of supply chain assurance and integrity – is there change afoot in the ethical marque landscape? Or do consumers and businesses still value them as much as before?
Surely, though, before we settle on what ethical marques we seek to work with, we need to settle on what our own ethics are? Have you truly defined the ethics of your own business?
Footprint Forum seeks to further the debate of broader ethics with a view to creating a narrative of best practice in the context of ethical marques. The objective is to give members access to thought-leadership that will allow for the right decisions to be made and actions to be taken.
The education sector has upheld the importance of ethics in the sustainability debate more than any other and therefore provides the perfect environment to distil the objective narrative and options that the whole industry should be striving for.
Julie Barker - Chair, TUCO
Richard Anstead - Head of Product Management, Fairtrade
Dr. Martin Caraher - Professor of Food & Health, City University London
Dr Rebecca Hawkins - Director, Responsible Hospitality Partnership
Simon Allison - Technical Operations Director, Innocent
Jeremy Boxall - Commercial Manager, LEAF
Lydia Stratton - Director, Freedom Foods
Ian Booth - Technical Director, Reynolds
John Isherwood - Head of Sustainability, Pret
More speakers to be announced