Across suppliers, retailers and the tertiary sector, these are the women making waves in fmcg’s impact on sustainability and the environment

Powerlist_Anna Turrell

Anna Turrell

Group sustainability director, Tesco

Since Turrell joined Tesco in 2020, she has helped Britain’s biggest supermarket deliver a ground-breaking partnership with WWF UK that led to an industry-wide “sustainable basket metric”. She has also launched sustainability-linked finance schemes to incentivise climate action across Tesco’s supply chains, particularly among SMEs, while taking the lead on mandatory food waste reporting and plant-based sales transparency.


Powerlist_Virginie Helias

Virginie Helias

Chief sustainability officer, Procter & Gamble

Helias has worked at P&G for over 30 years, initially on brand management and innovation before moving to sustainability in 2011. She is the architect of P&G’s ‘Ambition 2030’ roadmap, which sets out how the company will integrate sustainability across its supply chain, including a major water usage reduction, and brand innovation such a introducing shampoo bars across all of P&G’s haircare portfolio.


Powerlist_Marija Rompani

Marija Rompani

Director of ethics and sustainability, John Lewis

Rompani’s track record is eclectic to say the least – from BSI to UBS, Reckitt and Sainsbury’s. She’s brought a creative mindset to Waitrose’s sustainability strategy. Last year it won the Grocer Gold for Sustainability for a mattress range that used wool exclusively from sheep farmers supplying Waitrose. She’s also behind Waitrose’s efforts to ensure all key raw materials come from sustainable sources by 2025.


Powerlist_Rebecca Marmot

Rebecca Marmot

Chief sustainability officer, Unilever

Marmot has been the face of Unilever’s environmental strategy for 16 years. She devised its Sustainable Living Plan back in 2010, a comprehensive target-based transformation strategy that would address key issues across its value chain from waste and packaging, deforestation greenhouse gases, and sustainable sourcing. “The USLP was a first-of-its-kind in terms of its scope and ambition,” she wrote in its 10-year review.


Powerlist_Emma Keller

Emma Keller

Head of sustainability, Nestlé

As sustainability lead at the world’s biggest food company, Keller’s got a big job on her hands. Her CV includes time as WWF’s head of food and a PhD in sustainable palm oil. The key thing now is delivering change at the scale Nestlé requires. She is an advocate of “radical action across our whole value chain”, which includes switching to renewable energy in factories and offices, new packaging solutions, and regenerative agriculture practices.


Powerlist_Lucinda Langton

Lucinda Langton

Head of sustainability, M&S Food

Langton has been M&S Food’s head of sustainability for under two years, but she has over 20 years of experience. She joined M&S at an exciting moment in its transformation strategy, as it accelerated goals to double sales of vegan and vegetarian products by 2024, achieve 100% packaging recyclability by 2025, and eventually become a net zero business by 2040 – 10 years ahead of UN targets – all while expanding the Food division.


Powerlist_Tanya Steele

Tanya Steele


Steele is the first female CEO of the world’s largest independent conservation organisation, taking the helm six years ago. She is extending its influence, with WWF getting the biggest supermarkets to sign up to schemes like halving the environmental impact of their shopping baskets by 2030, the UK Soy Manifesto and the Retailer Net Zero Collaborative Action Programme, which aims to standardise measurement and reporting of GHG emissions.


Powerlist_Nina Prichard

Nina Prichard

Head of sustainable and ethical sourcing, McDonald’s UK

Prichard got some flak from McDonald’s customers recently for its new paper-based McFlurry spoon. But the move is just one of the fast food giant’s efforts to reduce plastic waste and move to more sustainable packaging. Beyond that, she’s sought to place a greater focus on ethical sourcing. She is now in charge of delivering the company’s ‘Plan for Change’ sustainability framework in UK&I.


Powerlist_Liz Fox

Liz Fox

Corporate responsibility director, Aldi

Fox has been climbing the ladder at Aldi since 2012, when she joined as an area manager. She was drawn to working in sustainability in 2020 “because it means my daily job is to drive positive change for people and the planet”. A Which? report this year found Aldi had some of the lowest greenhouse gas emissions of all supermarkets. Food waste remained a problem though, so Fox struck a major partnership with Too Good To Go earlier this year.


Powerlist_Tessa Clarke

Tessa Clarke 

CEO and co-founder, Olio

Clarke is one of half of food sharing app Olio, alongside co-founder Saasha Celestial-One. The two started the business back in 2015 to connect people with their local businesses and save good food going to waste. In 2021, Olio landed a $43m Series B round to boost its expansion and the app now has over six million users and partnerships with major UK grocers and foodservice operators like Tesco, Booker, and Pret a Manger.


The Grocer’s previous power lists highlighted the positive impact of gender diversity on internal policy. But what about policies at a macro level? Could greater female influence at board level result in companies being more inclined to consider societal wellbeing too?

Emily Deer

In short, the answer is yes. After the Paris Agreement, companies with a greater gender diversity saw a 5% greater reduction in their CO2 emissions compared with other businesses. And it’s not just in business either, with studies showing that countries with more women in parliament have stricter climate protection policies and lower carbon emissions.

Reading through the initiatives driven by this power list reads like an environmentalist’s dream manifesto for any company: net zero by 2040, waste reduction innovations, sustainability-led supplier collaborations (such as Tesco’s preferential rates for net zero suppliers), and end-to-end supply chain initiatives that bring environmental benefits across the entire food chain. The list is endless!

It’s no secret that having better ESG policies is better for business, with many seeing the dual benefits in their P&L as well as their ESG targets. So, if four months into the female power list series, we needed any more evidence about the importance, value and need to have gender-diverse teams, saving our planet has got to be right up there!

Emily Deer, Director at Newton Europe


Women’s power list: the leaders of grocery’s sustainability ambitions