Understanding the global plastics crisis, and hoping to combat it, the grocery chain Aldi is making some drastic changes.
If you were to walk into a grocery store and remove the packaging from every single item, you’d be left with a huge mountain of trash. And that’s exactly what happens. Packaging leads to trash.
Individual coffee pods, yogurt containers, bottled water, it all adds up.
Every day approximately 8 million pieces of plastic pollution find their way into our oceans. There may now be around 5.25 trillion macro and microplastic pieces floating in the open ocean. Weighing up to 269,000 tonnes. Plastics consistently make up 60 to 90% of all marine debris studied. It’s a real problem and not enough is being done about it.
Big grocery chains are a major contributor to the problem, if you consider the fact that they are the ones allowing these products to be sold in the first place. Without a proper channel to purchase said plastics, manufacturers would have to find another way to sell their products…like reusable containers for example.
Aldi has more than 1,800 U.S. stores in 35 states, and that serves more than 40 million customers each month. They know the importance of reducing plastic waste, and they’ve made a huge decision.
According to a press statement, the company is uniquely positioned to influence how its products are sourced, produced and brought to shelves because more than 90 percent of the store’s range is ALDI-exclusive. The company plans to reach the following set of goals by working with its suppliers:
By 2025, 100 percent of ALDI packaging, including plastic packaging, will have reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging;
By 2025, packaging material of all ALDI-exclusive products to be reduced by at least 15 percent;
By 2020, 100 percent of ALDI-exclusive consumable packaging to include How2Recycle label;
By 2020, implement an initiative to make private-label product packaging easier for customers to reuse;
Guide continuous improvement of product packaging by internal expertise and external evaluations.
Environmental practices are nothing new for the company. According to Jason Hart, CEO of Aldi U.S., “Aldi has never offered single-use plastic shopping bags. And while we’re pleased that we’ve helped keep billions of plastic grocery bags out of landfills and oceans, we want to continue to do more. The commitments we’re making to reduce plastic packaging waste are an investment in our collective future that we are proud to make.”
If only we could get more companies to realize the massive impact they have on the environment.