A proliferation of M&S headlines last month told of the retailer’s continued fashion woes and recent appointments.

But today’s story looks beyond its short-term turnaround efforts and shifts emphasis to the high-street stalwart’s long-term vision.

Flaunting its sustainability credentials, M&S has shouldered up to the likes of Ikea and Co-op by pledging to become a zero-waste business.

The latest iteration of its sustainability programme, dubbed Plan A 2025, includes a promise to make all packaging widely recyclable, raise £25m for charities and generate at least half of its food sales from healthier products.

M&S boss Rowe’s commitment to driving environmental change is, at least, a welcome distraction from the messages on that subject coming out of the White House today. 

For another dose of inspiration, take a close look at the newly refurbished Clarks store in Manchester and see what lessons retailers can learn from Formula One.

Quote of the day

“Plan A 2025 will help us build a sustainable future by helping our customers live healthier lives, supporting the communities they live in as we source from and look after the planet we all share. We believe we can engage all of our 32 million customers, 85,000 colleagues and 200,000 shareholders in the plan that becomes a mass voice for sustainable change”

– M&S chief executive Steve Rowe

Today in numbers

The amount Shop Direct owners hoped to raise in a sale of the etailer but bidders have backed away for now

The value of retail sales (£43.7bn) made online in Germany in 2016 – out of its total retail sales of €500bn

Tomorrow’s agenda

Happy weekend trading retailers!

Emily Hardy, senior reporter