In the aftermath of Earth Day 2019, we’ve brought together the latest initiatives undertaken by several supermarket chains in the US.
In this overview, we’ll look at Aldi’s efforts to introduce more hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) - free refrigeration systems in its stores, while Save Mart intends to run all its transport operations using 100% renewable drop-in diesel. We’ll also review how Albertsons aims to have the entirety of its own-brand product packaging recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable.
Aldi to introduce additional hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) – free refrigeration systems to its stores…
Aldi US has announced on Monday that it intends to supply 100 more stores with HFC – free refrigeration systems.
Aldi’s Vice President Aaron Sumida said: “Aldi is deeply committed to reducing its refrigerant emissions and believes natural refrigerants are the best long-term solution for the planet. To put this value into practice, Aldi has adopted transcritical CO2 refrigeration systems in many of its new and remodelled stores and targets 100 more in 2019. We’re excited to continue to drive forward change with our commitment to hydrofluorocarbon reduction and adopting natural refrigeration systems.”
The push forms part of a new initiative launched by the Washington, D.C.-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) to identify US retailers that are chipping in to reduce the use of potent greenhouse gases in cooling systems.
In addition to Aldi, the EIA has identified Whole Foods Market, Target, Sprout Farmers Market and Ahold Delhaize USA as grocers pushing ahead with plans to implement energy efficiency in their refrigeration systems.
Brittni Furrow, Vice President of sustainable retailing for Ahold Delhaize USA said: “We are committed to limiting our climate footprint, including taking steps to reduce HFCs used in cooling. Our company's global target to lower the average global warming potential of refrigerants in stores to 2,230 by the year 2020 reflects this commitment. We also continue to look for opportunities to use climate-friendly cooling technologies like those already employed in one Food Lion and three Hannaford stores in the US.”
Meanwhile, Save Mart is going all-in for the 100% renewable drop-in diesel
The Save Mart Companies (TSMC) said it will run, by the end of April, all its transport operations on 100% renewable drop-in diesel produced by Neste MY Renewable Diesel.
It will be effectively the first grocer to fully convert to this type of fuel, which is fully composed of renewable raw materials. The move will help reduce traffic emissions and increase the share of renewable energy used in transport, Neste said.
In addition, this latest push will help eliminate emissions equal to what’s emitted by more than 5500 cars per year.
Bruce Christiansen, group Vice President of logistics and supply chain optimization at Save Mart, said: "The company understands its business activities impact the environment, and by investing in Neste MY Renewable Diesel, TSMC is reducing up to 80% of its emissions, improving local air quality and reducing our carbon footprint."
And finally, Albertsons unveils a plan that aims to reduce plastic waste in its own-branded product range
Albertsons goal is to make sure that 100% of its own-brand portfolio packaging is recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable by 2025. Moreover, the plan aims to reduce the usage of single-use plastics, bring the share of recycled content into its own-brand plastic packaging to 20% and ultimately recycle its operational (non-consumer facing) plastics to be reused in new retail, industrial and/or consumer items.
In addition, the grocer aims to include clear recycling information on own-brand product packaging, including using QR codes. To achieve this, Albertsons has started collaborating with How2Recycle to improve the reliability, comprehensiveness and transparency of recyclability claims.
Furthermore, in order to support efforts to spread the use of sustainable packaging, the grocer intends to source and share best practices with other members of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, a collaborative of retailers, manufacturers, governments and educational institutions.
Geoff White, president of own brands at Albertsons said: “As we innovate and expand our own-brand lines, we always keep the overall impact of packaging in mind and seek out ways to improve sustainability for each and every product. Our suppliers are strong partners in this effort and, in many cases, are leading the charge on reducing, reusing and decreasing plastic content.”
Other grocers have already taken up sustainability initiatives, check it out here.