Time for action towards a sustainable future: a policy brief for “Green Supermarkets”


  • Anita Franziska Alaze
  • Saskia Karina Coomans
  • Persefoni Dimitsaki
  • Maud Alline Mol
  • Matilda Smith-Cornwall




Context: Climate change is considered to be the greatest threat to global public health. It affects our food and water sources, the air we breathe and the weather we experience. Climate change is equally harmful to supermarkets: 95% of the current food supply is at risk from climate change. As fewer products become available, costs will increase not only for consumers but also for purchasers. The European Green Deal functions as a secure foundation to create a business that is focused on the protection of the environment. The aim of this policy brief is to guide industry leaders on how to transform supermarkets to function in a more sustainable way and mitigate negative environmental impacts.

Policy Options: Three policy options are presented for discussion: reduction of food waste, reduce energy efficiency, reduce plastic packaging. Supermarkets are a major factor in climate change contributing to food waste, high energy use and plastic pollution, each with negative effects. We see an urgent need and opportunity for supermarket chains to act. These policy options are presented in conjunction to allow for maximum effect of action.

Recommendations: Supermarkets should reduce fossil fuel use in transport, storage, and delivery, incorporating sustainable design into practice. Landfill and food waste should be minimised by an improved supply chain management. Harmful packaging should be diminished or replaced by alternative materials providing customers with more sustainable options.




How to Cite

Alaze, A. F., Coomans, S. K., Dimitsaki, P., Mol, M. A., & Smith-Cornwall, M. (2023). Time for action towards a sustainable future: a policy brief for “Green Supermarkets”. South Eastern European Journal of Public Health. https://doi.org/10.56801/seejph.vi.240