Opinion: ViewPoint - Don't let green initiatives turn into a gimmick

Initiatives such as Marks & Spencer's payment for shopping bags also shine the spotlight on a company's wider environmental performance, argues David McKnight in this week's podcast, available at www.prweek.com/uk.

'Since the initiative launched, we have already seen some criticism of the amount of packaging Marks & Spencer uses for its products within the stores,' says McKnight, a director at Edelman's corporate responsibility management consultancy First & 42nd.

The launch of the initiative has marked a change in companies' policies, he adds: 'What this is actually about is companies being green and not just being seen to be green.'

McKnight says: 'The announcement comes at the anniversary of an agreement between the leading retailers and government to reduce the environmental impact of shopping bags.'

He concludes: 'Companies considering launching a similar initiative must have their wider environmental house in order as it will come under scrutiny.'

www.prweek.com/uk to see McKnight's Viewpoint.

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