Coca-Cola European Partners’ Gary Black explains how retailers can engage with their community

As an independent retailer, many of you will be hubs of your communities with a unique relationship with your customers. 

As a responsible business owner, you will no doubt be involved in local good causes helping to make a difference to your surrounding area while also striving to build a stronger relationship with the community you operate in, giving your store a point of difference. This year’s Great British Spring Clean, which is taking place from 22 March to 23 April, presents another opportunity to engage with your shoppers, mobilising people in your local area to get involved in an initiative that can help clean up towns and cities across the country.

The Great British Spring Clean is one of the country’s biggest initiatives to encourage people to tidy up their local areas. 2018 saw more than 370,000 people collect 650,000 bags of rubbish across Great Britain, which equated to 5,621 tonnes of litter removed from the environment. This year, 55,000 people have already signed up to take part, only two weeks after launch.

As a proud supporter of the Great British Spring Clean, we are urging retailers to get involved and help get half a million people involved. We’ll be doing our bit, too, with colleagues across our sites and field sales teams volunteering for Community Clean-ups.

So, what do you need to do? Firstly, download the free materials on the sustainability section of There is a guide to hosting a Community Clean-Up, as well as a promotional poster that can be edited once you have decided on a date and location of your clean-up. It can then be put up in your store to raise awareness in your local area. We’re also offering a number of free Community Clean-Up Kits, which include litter pickers, gloves and high-visibility jackets.

We’d recommend spreading the word among colleagues, customers and the community on your social media channels, and you can use hashtags like #GBSpringClean and #LitterHeroes before and after your clean-up to increase engagement. Finally, if you tell us about your clean-ups post-event, you will be entered into a prize draw with a chance of winning £1,000 for a local cause of your choice (for T&Cs visit