Royal Sustainability

For centuries a sign of the upmost quality, the Royal Warrant is increasingly a sign of environmental excellence too


You’ve got to be green to serve the Royals

In some respects it’s understandable why many businesses don’t bother much with the concept of sustainability, even if they recognise that it may have some wider social good.

After all, no one wants to burden business with unnecessary bureaucracy.

But as this blog often remarks, an increasing number of public and private sector organisations require a certain level of sustainability among their suppliers.

The Royal Warrant Holders Association is one such example.

While the Prince of Wales has long demanded environmental credentials, this has now been extended to the Warrants of the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh.

So since 2012 every company applying for a Royal Warrant must demonstrate a Sustainability Report with an accompanying Action Plan.

This includes a supporting statement regarding their actions on supplier engagement.

As one supplier said “Our warrant holder status has certainly influenced our level of [sustainability] commitment in terms of ensuring we are always the most up to date with any developments in the field.”  

The Green Stamp of approval

Over 850 warrants are now in use, around 80 of which are food companies.

Some warrant holders that have made limited progress with their sustainability have only received a one year extension, instead of the usual five, while those that have performed badly lose their warrants entirely.

This sort of tough action from supply chain owners can be expected more and more in the coming years.

With energy costs, government regulation and ethical consumerism all on the rise, companies can no longer afford to have complacent suppliers.

Getting a Royal Stamp of approval may be increasingly seen as a Green Stamp too.  

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