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Training - Sustainable Sourcing


My eyes were opened up to sustainability during a sourcing trip to South and Central America in 2008, when I saw the excellent, the poor and the downright disgraceful side of fruit growing. Brazil was poor - mile upon mile of orange groves without any indigenous trees, nor a bird to be heard or seen.  It felt wrong and judging by the significant damage to trees from disease including the aptly named ‘sudden death’, it indicated just how wrong this sort of farming is. In contrast, Costa Rican orange groves were interspersed with significant sections of natural forest. It looked right and when the supplier explained that insects and birds from the forest kept a check on pests in the groves I realised there are other ways to generate a good yield besides mono-culture.  In Ecuador I witnessed highly acidic, yellow passionfruit waste being discharged directly into the river. It was shameful and I cancelled the contract then and there.

Sustainability is a huge topic and isn’t always the easiest to make sense of. During this course we’ll bring rationale thinking and tangible ideas to your sustainability strategy.  We’ll explore the different lenses of sustainability: environmental, social and economic, we’ll assess your company’s current sustainability position and that of your suppliers and we’ll find ways for your business and suppliers to operate way beyond compliance. We’ll also understand what matters to you personally and how you can make a real difference.

orange grove high res.JPG


True sustainability doesn’t just create a good marketing story.  True sustainability brings real tangible benefits to the environment, the people and communities who work throughout your supply chain, your suppliers and your business too. The story is then very easy to tell as it’s true, it’s meaningful and it’s accurate.


True sustainability won’t be a cost or inconvenience to your business; in fact quite the reverse. True sustainability brings advantages that will out-weigh the effort many times over. Likely benefits will include:


  • A meaningful environmental, social or economic benefit to our precious World

  • Safeguarding or improving brand reputation

  • Creating value and delivering cost savings that aren't at the detriment of suppliers, communities or the environment

  • Increasing the security of your supply, with less waste

  • Step changing material quality

  • Creating marketing stories that are credible and brand enhancing

  • Attracting top talent and improving employee engagement and retention


...and you'll feel more equipped and empowered to make a difference to the World's sustainability woes

Other Details

Course Material

Attendees will receive a full training pack containing a summary of content from the day as well as copies of all case studies and group exercises.


Frost, Procurement Adventurer. Sometimes, I enlist the support of one of my long-standing business colleagues for specialist topics like accreditations.

Course duration

1 day intensive, 2 days advanced


One of the upsides of Covid-19 is it has forced us to challenge many paradigms of which one is travel.  This course can easily be run virtually by video conference.  If you'd still like it run face-to-face, I'm happy to run the course where it's most convenient for you.


Depending on your specific needs and on request.

Course Prospectus

Course Approach

The course is a fun and highly interactive mix of theory, many examples and two case studies. It’s usually followed up with two further sessions – one to apply the techniques to your portfolio and the second, several weeks later, to ensure the skills are embedded in your DNA and your business.

Course Level

I tailor the training specifically to you and your team catering from junior procurement experts to senior sourcing managers. It's not unusual for Category Directors and Heads of Procurement to join too.

Sectors covered

The techniques covered work across direct and indirect spend. I tailor the course material and case studies specifically to your portfolio.


Learning Objectives

The overall objective of this course is to design a sourcing strategy based on robust sustainability principles. As sustainability is a very broad subject and needs vary considerably depending on your product offer and circumstances, I’ll tailor the course around your needs.  Typical areas that can be covered are:

  • Core sustainability concepts - environmental, social and economic

  • Facing head-long into sustainability and hard truths

  • Your role and how you can make a difference

  • Conducting a sustainability assessment of your portfolio and supply chains

  • Creating a sustainability framework fit for your business

  • Engaging your team and business to take sustainability seriously

  • Identifying sustainability value drivers

  • Creating sourcing mechanisms suitable for sustainability

  • Devising investment and budgeting mechanisms for sustainable sourcing

  • Getting to sustainability compliance and then going well beyond compliance

  • Gaining sustainability accreditations (Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade, MSC, Organic etc)

  • Supplier selection using sustainability measures

  • Working with your suppliers to drive a positive sustainable change

  • Partnering with NGOs, other companies and third parties

  • Devising and managing smallholder growing programmes

  • Optimising supply chains to minimise waste

  • Creating a meaningful and tangible sustainability action plan

  • Tracking progress of your sustainability action plan

  • Creating meaningful sustainability stories that aren’t based on marketing spin

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