Sainsbury’s this week opened a wooden store at Dartmouth in Devon, which it claims is the UK’s greenest store.

The retailer said that CO2 emissions from the store will be 40 per cent lower than from a branch of a comparable size. This is achieved through several energy-saving and energy-generating features, including a biomass boiler – intended to halve the electricity taken from the national grid – rainwater collection and lower lighting levels. Food deliveries from the store will be made using a lorry that is powered by biomethane produced from rotting rubbish.

Sainsbury’s commercial director Neil Sachdev said: “We now want to apply all these benefits to the rest of our stores. Some ideas are automated, but most of what we’ve done has come from what our customers and colleagues tell us.”