John Lewis Plc

John Lewis is an employee-owned business, making it one of the most progressive shops on the high street. However, it only receives 4 out of 20 in our ratings, suggesting that when it comes to ethics it’s lagging behind in some areas.

People

All 83,000 staff are partners of John Lewis, meaning that each employee is a co-owner, having a democratic voice and a financial stake in the success of the business.

John Lewis received our best rating for Supply Chain Management. For example, the company works with a number of organisations that help to improve workers’ rights and lessen environmental impacts within supply chains such as the Ethical Trading Initiative.

However, when it comes to its garment workers, the story is quite different. John Lewis has no supplier list detailing where it sources its clothing from. This lack of transparency is worrying, particularly when workers rights’ abuses are rife in clothing production.

Environment

John Lewis has committed to some positive environmental targets in its Corporate Responsibility Report. For example, it states that by 2021 it will reduce its carbon intensity by 65% compared to its 2010 baseline. We gave it a middle rating for its environmental reporting, because, while it acknowledged the environmental impact of some of its operations, it failed to address key areas such as the use of chemicals in its supply chain.

Animals

John Lewis had no policy addressing animal testing. It was also revealed in 2018 that it owned Leckford Estate, which supplied Waitrose stores with milk, poultry and beef.

Politics

In 2018, John Lewis received our worst rating for tax avoidance. Two of the company's subsidiaries were listed in Guernsey and considered high risk for tax avoidance.

Image: John Lewis
  • Ethical Consumer Best Buy: No
  • Boycotts: No

Company information

Company Ethiscore

Company Address:

Customer Services, johnlewis.com, PO Box 19615, Erskine PA8 6WU.

Contact John Lewis

Tweet or email John Lewis to let them know what you think of their ethics.

Ownership structure

Ethical stories