Why is this project needed?

Questions are increasingly being asked about the integrity of our food supply, the impact of its production on the environment and animal welfare, and the fairness of trade between consumers and workers along the food chain.

In the UK and across Europe, there is a feeling that society should be much more involved in setting the farming and food agenda. This is no longer just the domain of government policy.

Supermarkets are the gatekeepers to the modern agriculture and food system. Competition between retailers for market share exerts a huge influence on the rural economy in the UK and overseas, by raising farming and quality standards and by seeking ever greater efficiencies. Their product range and siting policies affect the health of our communities and the environment.

Race to the Top is a collaborative project based on constructive engagement between an alliance of organisations and the major UK multiple retailers. We are seeking to measure and track what supermarkets are doing across a broad range of ethical issues, within the constraints of business pressures such as compliance with legislation or building shareholder value.

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