Crewe has worked for Sainsbury’s since 2008

Sainsbury’s head of sustainability Paul Crewe is leaving the business after more than nine years to take a leading role at environmental consultancy Anthesis.

Crewe, who has been instrumental in Sainsbury’s £10m Waste Less, Save More campaign, will join Anthesis as chief sustainability officer in January.

His experience in combating food waste is likely to represent a coup for Anthesis, which has done extensive work with supermarkets on the issue in the past.

The consultancy is understood to have been a leading force behind the food waste strategies of Tesco and M&S, and is an active contributor to government policy.

Crewe has worked for Sainsbury’s since 2008 and is credited with leading its Waste Less, Save More campaign, which began last year with a year-long trial in Swadlincote.

During the trial, Sainsbury’s tested out a number of initiatives to combat food waste and measured their effects in an independent evaluation by Wrap.

Despite failing to reach its goal of 50% waste reduction, Sainsbury’s hailed the campaign a success and said it had contributed to a single-digit percentage decrease in the town’s food waste.

Sainsbury’s has since rolled out the most effectivel elements such as community fridges and free fridge pods on a wider scale, and has pledged £1m in funding to ‘discovery communities’ looking to replicate the work.

A Sainsbury’s spokeswoman said: “We’d like to thank Paul for the significant contribution he has made to the business over the past nine years, in particular driving forward our sustainability and energy strategies. We wish him every success in his new role.”