Skip to navigation Skip to main content

Our ethics

The Co-operative has a very different philosophy to other businesses.

While we are here to grow–so we can invest in the future and our people–we are as interested in making a real difference as we are in making money. So as well as focusing on profit, we always think people and ‘planet’. It is what we mean by our ethical approach. It has been part of our beliefs since we first set up business in 1863, and it runs through every single aspect of our work. Today, we reinvest four times more of our profits in the community than the average high street retailer.


Wherever we work, we put something back.  For example, in 2010 we invested £11.5 million in projects which included making schools greener and supporting ‘grassroots’ sport. We also support international projects, including helping to provide clean water and sanitation to communities in some of the world’s poorest countries.

Find out how we plan to be the most socially responsible business in the UK.