Sustainable Food Supply Chain Commission


Organised by the Industry and Parliament Trust in collaboration with Food Ethics Council and the University of Warwick, the Sustainable Food Supply Chain Commission held its final session in March 2014 and launched the findings of the Commission in a report entitled "The Long and the Short of It" at a dinner in October 2014.

The Industry and Parliament Trust (IPT), Food Ethics Council and the University of Warwick set up a Commission in January 2014 to explore the challenges of maintaining a sustainable food supply chain. The Commission was made up of parliamentarians, and representatives from industry and academia, whose aims were to discuss issues food companies face in ensuring the sustainability of food supply chains and explore upcoming policy developments that seek to tackle them.

Among the topics discussed were employment conditions; distribution of profit; how to best tackle resource depletion and climate change. Following the conclusion of the Commission in May, a report will be published, outlining its findings and adding to the dialogue between parliament, industry and academia on this important issue. The report, "The Long and the Short of It" was presented to Commissioners at a dinner in October, and is available to download from the IPT website.


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We sit down prior to the launch of the final report with Russell Brown MP, Dan Crossley of Food Ethics Council and Sophi Tranchell MBE from Divine Chocolate.

Question and Answer session with Professor Tim Lang (City University London) and Fiona Gooch (Traidcraft).

Question and Answer session with Dan Crossley (Food Ethics Council) and Ed Dowding (Food Trade).

Read the Report: Sustainable Food Supply Chains

Read the final report "The Long and the Short of It" exploring the key issues and themes surrounding the Commission's work.

"Behind the Bottle" at Coca-Cola Enterprises

In May 2014, a group of parliamentarians and Commissioners visited Coca-Cola Enterprises as part of a series of industry visits exploring the challenges of food supply chains.

Commissioners visit McCain Foods

A group of cross-party parliamentarians and Commissioners visit McCain Foods as part of their work on the Food Supply Chains Commission.

Food Supply Chains Commission: Session Two

An IPT Blog and podcast covering the second evidence session as part of the Food Supply Chains Commission. The session explored challenges food companies are facing in their supply chains.

Commissioners Visit to Sodexo UK & Ireland

In April 2014, a group visited the Sodexo UK & Ireland head office in London, a visit as part of their work on the Food Supply Chains Commission.

Food Supply Chains: Leadership

Read the guest blog from Michael Gidney, Chief Executive Officer, Fairtrade Foundation as part of the Food Supply Chains Commission.

Food Supply Chains Commission: Launch

The IPT, Food Ethics Council and University of Warwick launched the Food Supply Chains Commission in January 2014. Read more about the Commission here.

The Commission's Members

Chair of the Commission
  • Dan Crossley
  • Dr David Barling
  • Bill Bartlett
  • Russell Brown MP
  • Deborah Cawood
  • Dr Rosemary Collier
  • David Croft
  • Professor Elizabeth Dowler
  • Lord Dykes
  • Baroness Gibson
  • Lord Grantchester
  • Michelle Hanson
  • Julian Hunt
  • Huw Irranca-Davies MP
  • Andrew Kuyk CBE
  • Paul Lindley
  • Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer
  • Professor Richard Norman
  • Baroness Scott of Needham Market
  • Sophi Tranchell MBE

Additional Information

Looking Back, Looking Forward: Sustainability and UK Food Policy 2000-2011’, Sustainable Development Commission – A report reviewing the development of UK food policy from 2000-2011, and making recommendations for addressing the challenges that lie ahead.

'Making Supply Chains Work for Producers and Consumers', The Guardian

'Great Expectations: Retailers and their supply chains - roles and responsibilities', British Retail Consortium - The report of the first round-table in the British Retail Consortium's 'Great Expectations' series, which looks at the roles and responsibilities of retailers as buyers and sellers in the supply chain.

'Elliott Review into the Integrity and Assurance of Food Supply Networks – interim report', Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs - the interim report of the review commissioned by Defra following the 'horsemeat scandal'.

Sustainable food chains make business sense and consumers happy’, The Guardian - Customers want food they can trust, and expect retailers to do the ethical and environmental thinking for them.

'Sustainable palm oil: how successful is RSPO certification?’ The Guardian - Discussion of the challenges facing palm oil certification, raising issues about certification more generally.

'Corporate response to climate change is plateauing’, The Guardian - How regulatory uncertainty is resulting in corporate inaction on supply chain sustainability (not food sector-specific).

'Food Justice’, Food Ethics Council - Publication examining a broad range of issues around social injustice in the food sector, including supply chain issues.

'Beyond Business As Usual’,  Food Ethics Council - Publication examining how government and business can work together more effectively in pursuit of a sustainable food system.