We want to halve our CO₂ emissions by 2030 The aim is to achieve a reduction of 15% amongst suppliers.
Overhauling the way we calculate our carbon footprint
In 2019, we completely overhauled the way we calculate our carbon footprint. We now also include emissions from all our overseas facilities, as well as emissions from all stages in the value chain, both upstream and downstream, such as coffee growing. Our carbon footprint is calculated according to the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG), which defines best-practice reporting standards.
In 2019, Tchibo emitted 39,000 tonnes of CO₂ at its own sites, with its own vehicles and through the purchase of electricity from the power grid. This is roughly equivalent to the annual emissions of nearly 5,000 German citizens, or nearly 10,000 long-haul flights between Frankfurt and New York. Our roasting facilities account for the largest share of emissions at 59%. Overall, we were able to slightly reduce emissions by 3.7% compared to 2017.
Based on our revised carbon footprint, in 2020 Tchibo adopted new climate targets for 2030, which will help keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius. These targets have been reviewed and endorsed by the Science Based Targets initiative.
What are we doing to tackle climate change?
Our products travel long distances using various forms of transport. To reduce CO₂ emissions, we use ocean shipping. Over 90% of our movements of goods are by water. In 2019, we were able to improve the way we utilise cargo space: we saved 346 containers for the same volume of goods. Wherever possible, we use rail transport instead of lorries. We use the rail network to transport our non-food items from the port to our warehousing facilities and to transport green coffee to our roasting facility near Warsaw.
After leaving our roasting facilities, the coffee then travels to our distribution centres on mega-trucks. These extra-long lorries are extremely efficient as a large number of products can be transported at the same time on a single transport route. We are also testing innovative concepts for the ‘last mile’, delivering to supermarkets and to our stores. For example, in 2019 we trialled the use of an electric lorry to deliver to three of our stores and eight supermarkets.
Modern logistics solutions don't just have to be forward-thinking, efficient and fast – they must be environmentally friendly too. This is something we’ve been working on for 14 years with great success. We were able to save 24% of our CO₂ emissions per tonne-kilometre between 2006 and 2018. GS1 Germany recognised Tchibo’s commitment in 2019 by awarding us the Lean and Green 1st Star.
Sustainable logistics also includes environmentally friendly shipment of parcels. That is why we have been using the GoGreen programme to offset the emissions of our parcel delivery company DHL since 2012. This enabled us to offset 6,800 tonnes of CO₂ in 2019.
For some orders, customers may receive two packages because the contents of their shopping basket are not available in one warehouse. This is something we want to avoid, by optimising transport between our warehouses, for example. We were able to reduce the number of orders shipped in two packages by a further four percentage points, down to 13%. This is good for the environment because it requires less packaging and produces less CO₂ during transport.
The shipping boxes and bags we currently use are almost exclusively made from recycled materials and have been awarded the FSC® Mix or Blue Angel eco-labels. To further reduce our consumption of resources, we tested reusable shipping bags for the first time in 2020. Find out more about our greener packaging and the ‘praxpack’ project here.
We help our textile manufacturers to increase their energy efficiency with the Carbon Performance Initiative (CPI2) online training tool – to date, 110 suppliers have actively used the tool, with 29 of them attaining the first qualification level ‘Bronze’ in the energy sector.
There are a number of things we do to help farmers adapt to climate change, including supporting the initiative for coffee&climate and also our Tchibo Joint Forces!® projects. Our certified sustainable coffees help reduce our carbon footprint.
A large proportion of Tchibo’s own CO₂ emissions are generated when we roast our coffees. That is why we are constantly looking to reduce our energy consumption in this area – including with the help of the ISO 50001-certified energy management system, which we use in our roasting facilities in Berlin and Hamburg. Software that we brought online at the Berlin plant in 2019 allows us to monitor consumption even more effectively. We have also invested 20 million euros in four energy-efficient roasters at our Hamburg facility. The first of these was put into operation in 2020. This measure will enable us to save over 1,000 tonnes of CO₂ per year.