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Ethical brand ratings and accreditation since 2001

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Tate & Lyle

How ethical is Tate & Lyle?

Tate & Lyle is a brand of sugar which has a below-benchmark score on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Sugar Ratings Table. Although Tate & Lyle has not yet met our ethical benchmark, we hope to see the brand make progress in the future.

We would have extra confidence in Tate & Lyle if it submitted itself to apply for Ethical Accreditation, whereby The Good Shopping Guide would make further detailed assessment and recommendations for ethical improvement.

Find out more about the ethical issues facing the Ethical Sugar sector.

What does Tate & Lyle do?

Tate & Lyle was founded in Liverpool, UK in 1859. The brand introduced the sugar cube to the UK in 1875.

In which areas does Tate & Lyle perform poorly?

Tate & Lyle was marked down under our criteria for Organic due to a lack of certification, and Political Donations as the brand’s parent company donated over $69k in recent election cycles. Tate & Lyle gets a middle rating for GM as it does not have a statement regarding their use.

Find out more about how we rate by exploring our ethical criteria.

Past Criticisms of Tate & Lyle’s record

Tate & Lyle’s parent company, ASR Group, settled a dispute over land theft and human rights abuses in Cambodia out of court in 2023. Following Brexit, the brand aims to increase imports from major cane producers like Brazil and Australia, which allow intensive use of hazardous and bee-killing pesticides that are banned in the UK.

In which areas does Tate & Lyle score well for its ethics?

Tate & Lyle scores well for being majority Fair Trade, and for its Environmental Report which contains targets and evidence of progress in areas including carbon emissions and waste.

We found no public record criticisms of Tate & Lyle relating to Nuclear, Fossil Fuels, Animal Welfare or Armaments so it scores well for these criteria.

How can Tate & Lyle improve its ethical rating?

The below-benchmark score that Tate & Lyle is awarded with on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Sugar Ratings Table is the result of an evaluation of multiple ethical criteria. To reach our minimum ethical benchmark and qualify for Ethical Accreditation, Tate & Lyle has some issues to resolve, including its lack of organic certification. If it applies for Ethical Accreditation, The Good Shopping Guide will be able to give Tate & Lyle some guidance to improve on these areas.

Were you aware that your brand could benefit from Ethical Accreditation? Brands accredited by The Good Shopping Guide can display our ethical mark, showcasing to consumers that it is an ethical and sustainable brand. If you’re interested in learning more, please contact us or complete a Free Initial Assessment form.

Ethical performance in category


GSG score


GSG category benchmark


Ethical Rating


  • Environmental Report


  • Genetic Modification


  • Organic


  • Nuclear Power


  • Fossil Fuels



  • Animal Welfare



  • Armaments


  • Political Donations


  • Fairtrade



  • Ethical Accreditation


  • Public Record Criticisms


= GSG Top Rating = GSG Middle Rating = GSG Bottom Rating