AMSTERDAM: UK food retailer Iceland, working with the PR specialist Weber Shandwick, has won the Platinum SABRE Award for Best In Show at the 2018 SABRE Awards EMEA, with #toocoolforplastics, a campaign that hit an important environmental zeitgeist.

At the end of last year in Blue Planet II, David Attenborough pleaded with the supermarkets, asking them to take a stand against the plastics that pollute our land and oceans. Iceland heeded that call, trumping the UK government’s own pledge to eliminate plastics packaging by 2042, by doing the same in just five years.

The outcomes of the move were impressive. The day following the supermarket’s announcement, the environmental pressure group Greenpeace launched a petition to its database of one million, calling on the top four supermarkets to follow Iceland's lead. In total, the announcement secured 524 pieces of coverage.

Structural considerations were important, however. As a family-owned company Iceland is able to move faster than a publicly listed company, a distinct advantage over its larger competitors.

A challenger status amplified the impact of the message to its bigger rivals, but Iceland was also sober about its own responsibilities in this huge change. As such, the work included communications not only with the outside world, but with the many suppliers and stakeholders working behind the scenes.

Meanwhile, an association (not a partnership) with Greenpeace in which the pressure group served as “a critical friend”, brought Iceland a crucial credibility, beyond a mere stunt.

The SABRE Awards, delivered by The Holmes Report, are the world’s largest PR awards programme and recognise superior achievement in branding and reputation in six regions: North America, EMEA, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, South Asia and Africa. WARC subscribers can read the winning case studies here.

Further Diamond award winners were celebrated at an event on Wednesday evening. These included Libresse, a brand of feminine hygiene products, which ran a global campaign, #bloodnormal, to normalise discussion of periods and establish itself as a vocal women's empowerment brand, by publicly challenging cultural stigmas. For this work, it received the Diamond Award for Brand Building.

Meanwhile, the professional services firm EY won the Diamond for research and planning with a case study in which PR was used as a lens through which to better understand clients’ concerns.

Sourced from The Holmes Report