9 June 2023

UK retail company John Lewis Partnership has announced that 100% of the leather for its own label furniture will come from higher welfare farms in the UK that supply Waitrose beef, writes ILM.

The company, which owns the supermarket chain Waitrose, reports that this move will help reduce its environmental impact while supporting British producers.

Waitrose’s farming supply chain has reportedly been awarded Best Retailer for farm animal welfare by Compassion in World Farming (CiWF) four times in a row.

In research conducted by OnePoll in May 2023 of 2,000 general population British households, 73% of shoppers reported that the welfare of animals produced for meat was important to them, with 89% saying it was important to also buy British sourced items.

In the poll, 85% said they owned leather items but 80% did not know if their leather came from a British farm. Finally, 62% said they do not consider the welfare of the animal when purchasing leather and only 5% think about where the materials used to make their furniture have been sourced from.

John Lewis Partnership noted that, by using one supplier (Dovecote Park), which commits to buying the whole animal, its farmers have more financial security to give them confidence in investing in more sustainable, higher welfare farming methods.

Nicola Waller, Head of Furniture at John Lewis, said: “Leather is a durable, practical and tactile material. It ages beautifully, creating a weathered look that is simply timeless, and a perfect long-term investment for the home. What makes our collection extra special is knowing that the material has come from British farms that practise the higher welfare standards that we know our customers will love.”

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