Milestones for people, animals and the environment

Sustainability has been an integral part of our business activities for decades, and these milestones are testimony to this approach. Building on these achievements, we work intensively on new projects every year.


    • First place for animal welfare: We took first place for the fourth consecutive year in the international animal welfare rating BBFAW.
    • Meeting with our stakeholders: In October, we invited our partners and business stakeholders from environmental, consumer and producer organizations as well as university and administration experts to the annual stakeholders’ meeting.
    • Most sustainable retailer in the world: Our sustainability performance was evaluated by oekom Research for the second time and we were again named the most sustainable retailer in the world.
    • Sustainability Progress Report: This year we published the first progress report that informs our stakeholders, partners and other interested persons in detail about our sustainability performance.
    • Award for WWF partnership: We won the “Responsible Business Award” in the “Business to NGO Partnership of the Year” category for our long-standing partnership with WWF.
    • Sustainability in 350 actions: Our actions on behalf of people, animals and nature are summed up under the slogan “Actions, not words”. This year we published the 350th action. Discover our 350-plus actions on our actions overview.
    • 25th anniversary of Max Havelaar: We have worked with the Max Havelaar Foundation for 25 years and have been a Fairtrade partner since the outset. This long-standing partnership has paid off and has chalked up some unique success
    • First water standard: We were the first retailer to develop a standard that governs the sustainable use of water in agriculture. We are therefore committed to protecting the valuable resource of water over the long term.


    • Award-winning energy strategy: In 2016 we won the Watt d’Or 2016 special award in the "corporate strategy" category for our energy/CO2 vision. This prestigious Swiss energy award is granted every year by the Federal Office for Energy.
    • New Coop store concept: We paid particular attention to the topic of sustainability in creating our new store concept. For example the refrigerators in the self-service area for meat and cold cuts are fitted with glass doors, and the lighting in the store is 100% LED.
    • Sustainable fish: Since 2016, all of our fish and seafood really has come from sustainable sources – whether fresh, frozen, tinned or in the restaurant. We also offer the largest selection of organic-grade seafood in Switzerland: Our fish and seafood are only deemed sustainable once the WWF has rated our fisheries and farms as recommended or acceptable.
    • A world innovation that saves diesel: At Railcare, we now chill our food with electricity generated via the axles while in transit. We can thus reduce our CO2 emissions as we save 75% of diesel for refrigeration per container wagon.
    • A pioneer in animal welfare: As in 2013 we again achieved an excellent score in the "Animal Welfare in Retail 2015/2016” report of Swiss Animal Protection (SAP). We have also taken first place in the international animal welfare rating Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW) for the fourth consecutive year.
    • Biggest logistics facility opens: The new, ultra-modern logistics centre in Schafisheim commences operations. We are setting new standards in terms of logistics and sustainability with this pioneering construction project. It is the first Swiss industrial building of its kind to be granted a Minergie certificate.
    • First public hydrogen filling station: We open the first public hydrogen filling station in Switzerland in Hunzenschwil, Canton Aargau. The hydrogen produced is free of CO2 and pollutants. At the same time the first hydrogen-powered truck and several company cars are integrated into our fleet.
    • Reducing the number of plastic bags: The new, fee-based plastic bags save around 850 tonnes of new plastic a year. What’s more, the bags are made entirely of recycled materials, to a large extent from plastic film waste from our distribution centres.
    • Sustainability in wholesale: Wholesale is setting new standards in terms of sustainability. The “Ursprung” own-label brand introduced by Transgourmet in Germany in 2012 was developed into a Group-wide own-label sustainability brand in 2016.


    • Critical raw materials: The growing and production of agricultural and forestry materials sometimes have considerable ecological and social consequences. We have defined specific goals and minimum standards for 14 materials in an attempt to minimize these consequences.
    • Toxin-free textiles: Greenpeace has called us a "trendsetter" in the fulfilment of our detox commitment. This is our clear commitment to avoiding the use of undesirable chemicals in the production of textiles.
    • Fairtrade growth: Our growth strategy in the fair-trade sector has reached the half-way point. We have quadrupled our range since 2009. The goal is to switch all materials from developing and emerging countries to fair trade by 2020.
    • Swiss Red Cross (SRC) and WWF: We have worked together with these two organizations for a long time and entered into a strategic partnership in 2015. We can provide fast, unbureaucratic assistance to people in need via the SRC. With the WWF we would like to hone our customers' awareness of sustainable consumer behaviour and build up a corresponding product range.
    • WWF recommends Oecoplan: Our environmentally friendly non-food own-label brand is recommended by WWF, the internationally renowned nature and environment protection organization.
    • Sustainable construction: We support the "Sustainable Construction Network Switzerland" (NNBS) construction standard. It is the first in Switzerland to take account of all areas of sustainable construction.
    • Environmentally friendly mobility: We have decided to build up the first public hydrogen filling station in Switzerland and to switch part of our fleet of company cars and trucks to hydrogen-powered vehicles. The necessary hydrogen will be obtained from environmentally friendly hydroelectric power. We also won the Energy Globe World Award in the "Air" category for our use of the first 18-tonne electric truck.
    • Health at work: We introduced occupational health management. We are making a contribution to ensuring that our employees are and remain fit and healthy.


    • 25th anniversary of Coop Oecoplan and launch of 238 dual-branded products in cooperation with brand manufacturers, as well as an increase in turnover amounting to CHF Mio 142.
    • First green conference to raise awareness among our business partners of greater commitment to sustainability and launch of over 300 common projects.
    • Participation in the Fairtrade Max Havelaar Fairtrade Cocoa Sourcing programme and subsequent conversion to the use of Fairtrade cocoa in more than 100 additional chocolate products.
    • Beginning of field experiment for dual-purpose chicken breeds.
    • Coop electric lorry wins four national and international awards, including the Zurich Climate Prize and the European Solar Prize.
    • Coop Group-wide reporting on sustainability as regards the multi-annual sustainability targets 2014–2020.
    • Coop apprentices take first and second place at the Swiss Skills federal vocational championships.
    • Coop donates CHF 500,000 to flood victims in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia, as well as CHF 250,000 to people affected by flooding in the Emmental region.


    • Approval of the multi-year sustainability targets for 2014–2020 for the entire Coop Group.
    • 20-year Naturaplan anniversary and increase in sales of organic products to over CHF 1 billion.
    • Confirmation of excellent performance in animal protection in a study by Swiss Animal Protection (SAP) and the International Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW).
    • Awarded the Zurich Climate Prize for Rail Care.
    • Major prize for vocational training of the Hans Huber Foundation.
    • Coop donates CHF 1 million to the victims of the flood catastrophe in the Philippines.


    • Coop receives the EHI Energy Management Award and the Schweizer Solarpreis award.
    • Naturaline honoured by “Sustainia” as one of the world’s 100 most sustainable forward-looking solutions.
    • Over 98 per cent of the seafood range (fish and seafood) switched to sustainable products.
    • Acquisition of Tropenhäuser Frutigen and Wolhusen, including dining facilities, exhibition space and production facility.
    • Rewe Foodservice receives the German Call Centre Association’s Quality Award for the Transgourmet Contact Centre following its “Work and family” audit.


    • Coop is declared the world’s most sustainable retailer by Oekom Research AG.
    • The Coop sustainability report receives the Öbu-Preis award for the third time (previous awards in 2005 and 2007).
    • Awarded the Goldener Zuckerhut prize for pioneering work in the field of sustainability.
    • Changeover of strong-selling Coop Qualité & Prix product range to Fairtrade raw materials begins.
    • A programme is launched to reduce packaging and optimize Coop own-label brands.
    • Switzerland’s first wood-chip furnace for an industrial bakery reduces CO2 emissions by 70 per cent.


    • Coop receives the Ethical BioTrade Award for Biodiversity.
    • New Logistics and Bakery Strategy 2015+ reduces annual CO2 emissions by 4,800 tonnes thanks partly to unaccompanied combined transport.
    • Coop abandons nuclear power and converts to 100 per cent low CO2 emission hydroelectric power from Switzerland and Europe.
    • First Coop supermarket exclusively lit by LED lighting.


    • Coop sustainability strategy agreed and integrated into strategic controlling.
    • Topten quality seal introduced.
    • Coop Verde American Express green credit card launched.


    • “CO2-neutral by 2023” vision agreed for all areas within Coop’s direct sphere of influence.
    • The Coop Naturaplan Fund becomes the Coop Sustainability Fund and is gradually increased to CHF 15 million per year.
    • The Verde magazine on organic produce and sustainability is launched.


    • Naturaplan is repositioned as a purely organic label.
    • Coop own-label sustainability brands Naturafarm and Pro Montagna are introduced.
    • Strategic cooperation with Hochstamm Suisse.
    • Food profiles introduced for own-label brand products.
    • “By air” logo introduced to indicate airfreighted goods. The CO2 emissions generated by airfreight are offset.
    • First Coop supermarket in line with the Minergie low-energy standard.


    • Exclusive partnership with Slow Food Switzerland. First products launched in 2007.
    • Founding member of the Round Table on Responsible Soy (RTRS).
    • Strategic partnership with WWF Switzerland focusing on forests, oceans, fish and the climate.


    • Partnership with “Schweizer Tafel” and “Tischlein deck dich”.
    • Coop joins the amfori Business Social Compliance Initiative (amfori BSCI) and adopts its Code of Conduct.
    • GlobalG.A.P. Risk Assessment on Social Practices (GRASP) project begins, involving Coop, Deutsche Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and GlobalG.A.P. Officially accepted by GlobalG.A.P. in 2010.


    • The Coop Group publishes its first sustainability report.
    • The Coop Code of Conduct is introduced. Its aim is to ensure business partners are treated fairly.
    • “Regional organic products” are launched as part of Naturaplan.
    • Coop joins the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).
    • Basel Criteria for Responsible Soy Production are drawn up with WWF Switzerland.


    • Coop Naturaplan Fund launched with an annual budget of CHF 10 million.


    • Naturaline is awarded the UN environmental award for sustainable partnership.
    • Comprehensive and binding guidelines on sustainable procurement are drawn up. Revised in 2008 and 2011.
    • FSC quality seal is introduced.


    • Sales of the own-label sustainability brands and quality seals Naturaplan, Naturaline, Oecoplan and Fairtrade Max Havelaar exceed CHF 1 billion for the first time.


    • The first Coop Natura Prize is awarded to business partners for outstanding sustainable products and services.
    • The Coop Textile Code of Conduct for the textile industry is agreed.
    • Launch of MSC-certified seafood products


    • Exclusive partnership with Pro Specie Rara. First products introduced in 2002.


    • Biore Foundation established by Remei AG, with Coop as a board member.


    • Naturaplan and Naturaline own-label sustainability brands introduced and Oecoplan repositioned.


    • The present Fairtrade Max Havelaar quality seal is introduced as the Coop own-label brand Cooperación.


    • The Coop own-label sustainability brand Oecoplan is introduced (as a label for environmentally friendly packaging and food products).


    • Environmental protection is enshrined in Coop’s Articles of Association.


    • The Coop Mountain Areas Sponsorship Programme is founded to support the inhabitants of mountain regions in Switzerland.

Principles and topics