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M&S helps customers to enjoy lower carbon diets

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M&S is launching its Sparking Change National Challenge, inviting its customers to try a lower carbon diet. Available through its ‘Sparks’ loyalty reward scheme, participants will be supported with a range of resources designed to help them make delicious, and more sustainable meals from scratch. M&S will be providing ideas around incorporating more plant-based protein as M&S also joins forces with Meat Free Monday to encourage families to go plant-based for one day a week. There will also be a focus on ‘More Taste, Less Waste’, enabling customers to cook healthy meals whilst reducing food waste.

The most recent M&S Family Matters Report highlights that the environment is a growing concern for two-thirds of families in the UK, whilst almost half believe that we should be eating less meat and well over a third say they’ve already made changes to the food they buy to take account of climate change. To respond to customers’ growing sustainability concerns, M&S partnered with award-winning environmental charity, Hubbub, to create a nine-week behaviour change pilot involving almost 100 customer and colleague families from across the country.

Grounded in behaviour change theory, the Sparking Change pilot focused on four areas – protein from plants, cutting food waste, cooking from scratch and sustainable living beyond the kitchen. All participants received tips, recipes, the opportunity to join live cook-alongs, as well as a session with a nutritionist.

After three months, participants reported lasting impacts, with:
90% eating less meat and wasting less food
76% of participants’ children more likely to get involved with cooking
73% cooking from scratch more often and 75% eating more seasonal produce
70% feeling healthier
39% saving money (on average £22 per week)
34% more likely to buy plant-based meat alternatives

To meet the growing demand for meat alternatives, M&S is expanding its Plant Kitchen range with new products including Plant Kitchen Veggie Balls, Veggie Mince, Plant Kitchen VLT and Plant Kitchen Lasagne.

Sophia Linn, Nutritionist at M&S, commented: “Eating more sustainably needn’t be complicated or expensive – there are simple steps we can all take to reduce our impact on the planet. Our Sparking Change Challenge is designed to help customers make small changes that can easily be incorporated into their day-to-day lives and make it stick for the long term.”

Mark Breen, Senior Creative Partner at Hubbub said: “The lasting impact for families who have already taken part in Sparking Change has been incredible. Reducing food waste and eating less meat and more plant-based foods are two of the simplest ways we can all do our bit to help the environment.”

Image: M&S

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