ICA Gruppen’s operations include grocery retail, pharmacies, real estate, banking and insurance. Climate-related risks and opportunities are analysed both within each company and for the Group as a whole.
ICA Gruppen has a long-established responsibility at the board and management level for sustainability-related issues, which includes climate-related risks and opportunities. The strategic direction of ICA’s sustainability work is set by the Board of Directors and is managed through strategic planning and business planning processes. While the CEO is responsible for sustainability issues within the Group, management of the day-to-day work has been delegated to the Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer, who is member of the ICA Management Team. To support the Management Team and the Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer, ICA Gruppen has established a management team for sustainability consisting of all cross-functional sustainability managers.
While the climate transition presents significant risks for ICA Gruppen’s businesses, strategies and financial planning, significant opportunities can also be attained if the Group responds to the changes in areas such as consumer attitudes and consumption patterns that the climate transition is bringing about. The climate issue is therefore an integral part of ICA Gruppen’s long-term strategic direction and of the ambition areas that have been identified for responding to the changes and drivers in the world around us. ICA Gruppen has an ambition to be an industry leader by 2025 in developing its operations toward net zero impact and to be recognised as a trusted source of guidance for making sustainable choices. Strategically important initiatives for reducing ICA Gruppen’s contribution to and exposure to the effects of climate change include ICA Gruppen’s climate ambition, ICA Gruppen’s fuel strategy (pertains to ICA Sweden and Apotek Hjärtat), and ICA Gruppen’s energy strategy.
Food production accounts for a significant share of global GHG emissions. ICA Gruppen’s grocery retail operations are therefore extra meaningful both for reducing the Group’s climate impact from a value chain perspective and for conveying the long-term opportunities that exist in the transition to a food system with a lower climate and environmental impact. ICA Sweden’s and Rimi Baltic’s efforts to promote locally and domestically produced foods both reduce vulnerability to climate-related disruptions in the global supply chain and meet the growing interest among consumers for locally produced foods. Efforts to develop an attractive and sustainable plant-based range, such as through ICA Växa, are also helping to build up an offering that meets customers’ future preferences. To develop its strategic management of climate-related risks and opportunities, in 2023 ICA Gruppen will be performing scenario analyses in selected areas, with a starting point in the mapping of climate risks that was conducted in the preceding year.
Climate and sustainability risks already form part of the overall risk analysis for ICA Gruppen. In the review of the risk process that was conducted during the year, it was concluded that climate and sustainability risks are to be integrated in the ordinary risk management process based on the impact they have on ICA Gruppen, such as in the form of their impacts on the brand (brand risk), physical disruptions (operational risk) and higher costs (financial risk). In 2022 an expanded mapping of climate risks was conducted with focus on the grocery retail trade’s value chain (for a summary of this, see the annual report). In a next step, these too will be assessed based on potential financial impacts.
Measurement methods and targets
Since 2007 ICA Gruppen has been reporting climate emissions and setting targets for reducing its climate impact, with a starting point in accepted standards such as the GHG protocol and Science Based Targets. In 2022 the review of the Group’s Scope 3 emissions that was begun a year earlier was completed. However, calculating ICA Gruppen’s Scope 3 emissions still requires a number of assumptions and standardised estimates, and the work on improving data quality and calculation methods will continue during the coming year.
Additionally, during 2022 ICA submitted its commitment to the Science Based Targets initiative to set climate targets in line with the recently launched net zero standard. The commitment entails that ICA will strive to achieve the Paris Agreement’s 1.5C target and to have net zero emissions in the entire value chain by 2050 at the latest. In 2023 ICA Gruppen’s climate targets will be further clarified to meet the SBTi’s criteria. An important future development area will be to define measurement methods and targets in relation to the impact of climate-related risks and opportunities in ICA Gruppen’s operations, strategy and financial planning. This will follow once a more in-depth review of the strategy aspect, such as scenario analyses, has been completed.