Metro Group has created a sustainability board, as part of its plan to make CSR an additional strategic focus across the whole company.

Chaired by CEO Dr Eckhard Cordes, Metro said it is targeting a 15% reduction of its carbon footprint by 2015, and will also focus on increasing its activities in the field of sustainable fishery and aquaculture, as well as in the qualification of suppliers in emerging and developing countries.

"Sustainability is a new strategic pillar of Metro Group", said Cordes. "Our goal is to have a clear profile, a clear structure and a clear responsibility. We are well aware of the fact that creating value requires values".

He added: "We are combining theory and practice - the experts from the corporate departments of the holding company and the experts for procurement or finance from the sales divisions, for example".

Four work groups will develop concepts and prepare the decisions of the sustainability board. The groups will focus on topic areas such as; quality, health and environment, energy and resource management, employees and social affairs as well as social policies and stakeholder dialogue.

Metro Group said that product quality is "one important issue" for the board in the traceability of individual products back to their producer.

The group also highlighted its intention to focus on the efficient use of energy.