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Actively managing sustainability

In line with METRO AG’s strategy, sustainability is systematically and organisationally embedded in the core business. Sustainability management takes into account interdependencies between economic, environmental and social aspects in an efficient, solution-oriented manner. The Management Board of METRO AG is involved in the topics presented here and is regularly updated about their progress by the Sustainability Committee. Moreover, the remuneration of the Management Board for 2021/22 has been linked to the achievement of certain sustainability targets, including the reduction of CO2 emissions and food waste. In the past, the long-term remuneration of senior management (below the Management Board) was linked to the rating of METRO’s sustainability performance in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) rating. For financial year 2022/23, the Supervisory Board has decided to adjust the remuneration system of the Management Board, which will be presented to the Annual General Meeting 2023. In this context, sustainability targets are supposed to be included in the long-term remuneration of the Management Board. The Management Board intends to also apply this revised system for the new tranches of the long-term remuneration for the senior management. As the highest sustainability body in the company, the Sustainability Committee provides the strategic framework and group-wide goals and facilitates the exchange of information on sustainability issues at the highest management level – sometimes also with external input from guest speakers. To adequately respond to the specific market and customer requirements, the METRO companies manage the operational implementation of overarching sustainable development goals within this framework. They are responsible for working on the relevant sustainability issues, for defining and implementing specific targets and measures and for monitoring their success. The committee is chaired by 2 representatives from the top management, who are regularly rotated. Other members of the committee are:

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METRO aims to be climate-neutral in its own global operations by 2040. An insight into the measures in the wholesale stores – and on their roofs and car parks.

  • People in charge of corporate responsibility at METRO AG
  • Representatives of the core functions procurement, quality assurance, communication as well as energy management/real estate sustainability
  • Representatives of the METRO national subsidiaries

Sustainability management is closely linked to our opportunity and risk management through formalised reporting and assessment of sustainability-related opportunities and risks. This enables the Management Board to systematically identify, evaluate and control deviations from the sustainability goals and the associated opportunities and risks.

An analysis of potentially reportable risks in connection with the non-financial aspects was carried out. After applying the net method and considering the risk mitigation measures, it did not reveal any material risks as defined in § 289c Section 3 sentence 1 nos. 3 and 4 of the German Commercial Code (HGB) with a likely or definitely serious negative impact on the aforementioned aspects. For more detailed descriptions of this system, we refer to the section on environmental and social risks in chapter 5 – Opportunities and risk report.

Our stakeholders evaluate all sustainability measures implemented, for example through ratings. These assessments by independent third parties show us progress and potential for improvement in our actions and are thus an important motivation and management tool for us.

Institutional Shareholder Services – Environmental, Social, Governance (ISS ESG) already awarded the prime status C+ (on a scale from D- to A+) to METRO in April 2020 to recognise them as a leader in the industry sector. The next assessment is expected in 2023. In financial year 2020/21, we were once again listed in the Food & Staples Retailing group in the internationally important Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) World and Europe. In 2022, METRO was also once again listed in the FTSE4Good Index. New annual results at the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) were last published in December 20211. METRO scored an A- (F to A scale) in CDP climate protection after an A rating in 2020. In addition, METRO was also assessed by CDP in the Water Protection and Forests categories. In the Water Security category, METRO was able to maintain its B rating. The rating was also maintained in 3 out of 4 assessed categories involving forests: C in cattle, B in palm oil and B- in soya. In the Paper category, METRO was rated B after a B- rating in the previous year. Morgan Stanley Capital International Inc. (MSCI) gave METRO an AA rating (scale CCC to AAA). Morningstar Sustainalytics ranks METRO’s risk as low in the risk assessment with a value of 17.6 (scale 0 to 40+), which puts the company in 26th place out of 194 companies within the analysed sector. METRO has been listed as a member of the Bloomberg Gender Equality Index (GEI) since 2022.

When oyster farming meets sustainability

The Geay family, oystercatchers in La Tremblade since 1874, not only has a profound appreciation for oysters, but also deeply cares about ground-breaking and sustainable farming.

Assessment of relevant sustainability indexes and rankings




Publication date

DJSI World/Europe

77 index member

0 to 100

November 2021


C+ prime status

D- to A+

April 2020

CDP climate protection


F to A

December 2021

CDP water protection


F to A

December 2021

CDP forests

B palm oil
B- soya
B- paper
C cattle

F to A

December 2021

FTSE4Good Global/Europe Index

Index member


June 2022




August 2021


Low risk (17.6)
26 of 194 in the food retailer industry

0 to 40+

May 2022

Bloomberg GEI

Index member


January 2022

Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)
The unaffiliated organisation was founded in London in 2000. It aims to disclose companies’ CO2-emissions as well as their climate risks, thereby contributing to the transparency of their corporate financial reporting on climate-relevant data. In addition, the CDP conducts annual company surveys.
Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI)
An index family that measures the sustainability of the company. The measurement is comprised of economic, environmental and social criteria. For listed companies, the focus is on corporate management, employee policy and transparency, compliance with human rights and risk management. Among all sustainability indices, the DJSI family carries a particular cachet in terms of quality.
Food, non-food
Under the global term food, METRO summarises the following categories of goods: fresh foods, durable foods, nutrients, frozen foods and drinks of all kinds, as well as luxury foods, dietary supplements and pet food, but also detergents, cleansers and cleaning agents, which are sometimes also labelled as near-food. All other goods are considered non-food items.
Statutory and factual regulatory framework for the management and supervision of a company.
Previous year Period of 12 months that is usually cited as a reference for statements in the annual report and refers to the financial year preceding the reporting year.
In the financial sector, rating represents the systematic, qualitative measurement of creditworthiness. Ratings are expressed in various grades of creditworthiness. Well-known agencies that perform ratings are Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s and Fitch.

1 The CDP results for 2022 are only available after the assurance date of this annual report.

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