Our Commitment

"Sustainability is still a subject that for many is peripheral to doing business – a soft pledge from a company wishing to position itself positively in the eyes of customers and shareholders. But I'd like to be clear: People n Planet isn't just a part of our business – it is our business. It is a journey we have been on since the late 1980s. Our sustainability strategy is linked inextricably to our business strategy."

~ Gareth Ackerman

WATCH - Pick n Pay's ESG journey

Group ESG targets


in food waste by 2030

Net zero carbon

(Scope 1 and 2) by 2050


Pick n Pay branded packaging to be recyclable/reusable by 2025


CO2 refrigeration by 2040


of all waste diverted from landfill by 2025


reduction in water usage per store 2025

2023 Highlights

R106.6 billion


R39.1 million

expenditure on Corporate Social Investment (CSI)

Level 5

B-BBEE rating

R2 billion

Savings from energy conservation exceed R2 billion since FY10


Reduced average packaging weight for Pick n Pay own brand products by 27.5% against our 2019 baseline


of Pick n Pay branded packaging is now recyclable or reusable

Dive into our ESG databook for more details on our Sustainability Highlights

Strategic integration of ESG has never been more important. Working with a long-term view, sustainability has taught us much over the decades. We've learnt that, while philanthropic giving remains critical in the face of dire need, positive ESG impact achieves greater traction and scale when linked directly to the business model.

Much of our integration work has focused on innovating to deliver ESG impact while also reducing costs, increasing revenues or improving the ecosystem that comprises our extensive value chain. We're also clear that effective intervention in ESG challenges requires a full systems view and long-term, committed partnerships. Though clearly not unique, these insights continue to inform our sustainability strategy and approach to ESG.

Our sustainability effort – and increasingly our strategic decisions – are guided by a framework focused on:

  • Partnering to shift the food system
  • Reducing our environmental impact
  • Investing in people and communities

Each of these links directly to our business model, ensuring that our commitment, disclosure and transparency on ESG targets are sustainable for the organisation as well as delivering measurable stakeholder value and supporting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Building on our core strengths, the Group's strategy continues to focus on:

  • serving our customers better;
  • partnering to expand our digital reach;
  • further improving our productivity and the culture that underpins it.

Each of these elements opens an opportunity for greater ESG integration and positive ESG impact – at scale. We have included data on all of these elements, and more, in the 2023 ESG data-book. We remain committed to transparency in respect of our ESG targets, actions and outcomes.

View our Sustainable living strategy for full details – 1MB

As a retailer with thousands of suppliers and millions of customers, we are mindful of our wide reach and the environmental impact we have across our value chain. We're working on a broad set of solutions and targets to reduce our impact, with a particular focus on energy, refrigerants, water, waste and packaging, working with our suppliers and partners to innovate for a healthy planet and helping our customers play their part in protecting the environment.

We have formally set a Group carbon commitment to be Net Zero by 2050, with key climate change related targets across the Group. Minimising and accounting for our direct climate change impacts is the focus of our climate commitments.

Focus areas:

  • Reducing our carbon footprint
  • Conserving freshwater
  • Reducing and repurposing waste
  • Finding solutions to the packaging challenge

Dive into the details with our latest ESG databook and our climate change policies.

View our Environmental Impact strategy for full details – 125KB

Our CSI strategy is closely linked to our business strategy and our key focus areas are Food/Nutrition and Education.

Food Insecurity has a wide range of socio-economic impacts that includes issues such as stunting (which impacts on education) and social stability. Companies operate within a very complex environment and social stability allows for them to operate successfully. Our partnerships to redistribute food reduces our food waste and supports thousands of families to be more secure and contribute to a stable socio-economic environment.

Education is a key method for lifting people from poverty. The Pick n Pay School Club provides support to 3 185 schools with free education material, contributing to a pipeline of potential future employees. We believe that doing good is good business. Customers reward businesses which they believe are at the heart of society and give back to the communities they serve. As customers reward us with their loyalty, we can grow, serve more customers, generate more jobs, and help build resilience in more communities.

Focus areas:

  • Targeting education and awareness
  • Targeting hunger
  • Targeting health and wellbeing
  • Measuring impact

Dive into the details with our latest ESG databook:

View our CSI: Investing in our communities and in our people – 576KB

Our Enterprise and Supplier Development (ESD) initiatives are steadily increasing with more than R3.1 billion spend with small, medium and micro enterprise (SMMEs) during the last financial year. Our ESD Programme currently supports 187 suppliers, with a further 100 prospective suppliers expected to join the programme.

Through our ESD initiatives, we maintain a leading role in mentoring, encouraging, and enabling small-scale entrepreneurs to become sustainable suppliers to the retail industry. We hand-pick entrepreneurs with innovative product concepts or start-up enterprises to actively grow our diverse pool. Pick n Pay employees play a central role in guiding and nurturing these entrepreneurs through our app-based mentorship programme. Supporting strategic business objectives, we've improved the scope and quality of the ESD data we measure, including better monitoring of our training delivery and impact. Looking ahead, we will be supporting SMMEs to achieve their food safety system accreditation requirements.

Our dedicated Pick Local brand endorses goods and services of small South African producers, suppliers and service providers who demonstrate a commitment to creating jobs, are B‑BBEE compliant, and ensure that their raw materials are locally produced, manufactured, assembled, or packaged.

Pick n Pay Clothing is increasingly investing in local manufacturers, and nearly 40% of our clothing is now made in South Africa – up from 10% at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Unique to our proudly "Made in South Africa" range of quality wardrobe essentials is our collaboration with innovative local designers to curate limited-edition collections of on-trend pieces at accessible prices for everyone.

View our Partnering with local suppliers to shift the Food System – 298KB