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Compass Group pursues 2030 net zero goal with new sustainability appointment

The University of Oxford’s Professor Sir Charles Godfray will lead the UK foodservice company’s efforts to reach net zero emissions goal by the end of the decade

Godfray's most cited research studies how to meet the challenge of feeding a growing global population | Photo credit: Compass Group

Compass Group UK & Ireland has appointed Professor Sir Charles Godfray FRS as its Chief Climate and Sustainability Advisor to its executive team to help deliver the organisation’s commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030 as part of its Climate Net Zero pledge.

Godfray, currently Director of the Oxford Martin School and Professor of Population Biology at the University of Oxford, is widely considered an expert on food security and chaired the UK government Office of Science’s Foresight project on the Future of Food and Farming. His most cited research article, published in the journal Science, studies how to meet the challenge of feeding a growing global population.

“Compass’ size and scale means that it is uniquely positioned to have a significant impact on the food system. The team’s commitment to working with suppliers, clients and its people is outstanding and I’m looking forward to contributing to their ambition. Together, we must create the blueprints for the wider industry to learn from,” said Godfray.

The UK-based multinational contract foodservice company has made several pledges to help it reach Climate Net Zero by the end of the decade. These include ceasing the air freight of fresh fruit and vegetable produce to encourage local and seasonal sourcing, switching to renewable energy and electric cars at its sites, and removing around 142 million items of single-use plastics from its operations.

“Specialist guidance will play an increasingly integral role in the business decisions needed to deliver our climate commitments, so this level of direction and thought leadership within our Executive Team is a real privilege for everyone at Compass and all those working with us,” said Carolyn Ball, Director for Delivery of Net Zero, Compass Group.

Compass Group emerged from the pandemic in a strong position, posting half-year revenue growth of 37.9%, or £3.2bn ($3.96bn), for the six months ended 31 March 2022. 

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