Carbon footprint is on the agenda for a number of leading food brands as they look to improve efficiency in their supply chains.

The Co-operative Group, Sainsbury's and Nestle have pledged to look to reduce the amount of emissions that their supply chains generate. They will also look at the impact that everyday items such as milk, potatoes and chocolate have on the environment. It comes in light of results from the Product Sustainability Forum which showed the 50 grocery and household items which have the biggest influence on the atmosphere.

Officials from the organisations noted that products such as bananas, onions, breakfast cereals and milk when put together can account for over 90 per cent of the greenhouse gas emissions which are pumped into the air. This comes from the productions, transportation and selling phase across the UK and it has prompted these companies to act.

Liz Goodwin, chief executive of WRAP and chair of the Product Sustainability Forum, said: "This integrated approach enables companies to consider the biggest environmental and cost-saving opportunities. By highlighting opportunities for improvement the PSF is enabling whole supply chains to come together and tackle the hotspots that have been identified."

The three major retailers have now launched their own pilot projects to assess ways in which they can all streamline their supply chain structures and reduce their impact on the environment. Sainsbury's is looking at the carbon emission damage within its meat, fish and poultry products while The Co-operative Group and Nestle will conduct similar schemes but in their potato, milk and chocolate supply chains.

Major drinks manufacturer Diageo has also been involved in revamping its current system as it looks to save £60 million while also helping to develop more supply chain jobs. The company was boosted by a rise in sales of brands such as Smirnoff vodka, Johnnie Walker whisky and Captain Morgan rum. The latter saw transactions grow by five per cent in the six months up to December 30th 2012.