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TescoGate: Retailer urges staff to report misconduct as it launches new code of conduct

Published:  02 March, 2015

Tesco has launched a new code of conduct for staff, according to Harpers' sister title The Grocer.

The move comes in a bid to avoid a repetition of the behaviour that led Tesco to report a £263m hole in its finances, which resulted in a number of high profile staff being suspended. The profits blackhole is the subject of both a police inquiry by the Serious Fraud Sqaud and an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority. The Grocery Code Adjudicator is also looking in to the trading behaviour at Tesco with its suppliers.

CEO Dave Lewis reportedly told staff they must speak up if they suspect misconduct in relation to its suppliers, and said he wanted them to raise any concerns they might have.

The new Tesco code of conduct pinpoints 21 keys areas covering all aspects of the business from ethical trading to avoiding a repeat of the horsemeat scandal. It is also introducing a 'code intranet', along with staff training to provide a guide to responsible trading.

Tesco sign

Lewis said he wanted to clear up any grey areas and ensure its commercial teams knew what practises were encouraged. "We have written very clearly what judgement we want our commercial teams to make," he said.

Last week the retailer confirmed that Dan Jago, one of eight senior officials suspended last year at the height of the crisis, will return to the retailer in a new role on March 9. Previously Tesco's director of wine, spirits and beer, he is returning as category director, group wine, where he will work alongside Gavin Warburton who has officially taken over the role as UK category director for beers, wine and spirits.

The retailer is still looking for a replacement for Laura Jewell MW, who recently joined Wine Australia to head up its UK and European operation.