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Responsibility, Sustainability & Community

Christine

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Apr 8th, 2013

Sustainable Future

Creating a sustainable future is something that every company has an eye toward, and we’ve been looking toward it for a long time.  Albertsons has been industry leader in recycling plastic bags since before plastic bags at grocery stores became a hot topic, but we know this is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to being a responsible environmental steward — we need to make responsible choices and decisions, and also offer what our customers want, too.

For nearly 20 years, Albertsons stores and distribution centers have been recycling plastic and cardboard, and for the last 15 years, we have offered community plastic recycling bins in our stores. There are a lot of different type of plastic bags that can be recycled – like newspaper bags and dry cleaning bags in addition to any grocery store’s bags. In seven years, Albertsons Market stores and customers have helped to divert over 7 million pounds of plastic from landfills that have been converted to recycled construction materials. We offer reusable bags at our stores, too, and we also make paper bags available for customers who prefer them.

We’ve gotten involved in discussions in many cities about plastic bags as they’ve researched what’s right for their citizens, and we’ve advocated recycling and education programs in most cases. Why? Because we feel that in every solution there needs to be consumer choice.  We’ve found that most of our customers appreciate the durability of a plastic bag for many alternate uses, like carrying their sneakers to work or using them for pet waste. Some even use them as their reusable bags.  Other customers feel strongly that paper bags are the way to go, and also reuse them around the house. We see all types of reusable bags at our stores – from ones that customers make themselves (even out of plastic bags) to high end choices like SnapSacs.

We don’t want to limit choices. How YOU want to carry your groceries out of the store is your decision. That also extends toward your decisions of foods you purchase. We know that many consumers take sustainability into account when making food purchases so our responsibility toward the environment also extends into supporting sustainable food practices in ways that helps our local economies as well as the environment. Where we can, we source products from local growers and providers. And as we monitor global food sustainability issues, which at this time is mostly in regard to responsibly fishing our oceans, we make assortment decisions in the seafood we offer. We use the same resources that are available to you – like www.nmfs.noaa.gov/fishwatch/ – and those of our vendor partners to help make responsible choices that are good for our planet’s oceans.

On that topic, it’s sustainable fishing that has captured headlines lately, because of concerns about creating a different type of sustainable fish. Recently, there’s been a lot of discussion by consumer organizations regarding Genetically Engineered foods, too, and the main focus has been on a company that proposed a genetically engineered salmon to the Food & Drug Administration. We’ve always believed that consumers have the basic right to know the relevant information about the products that they buy, including information about genetically modified foods or foods containing genetically modified ingredients. We support the role and responsibility of FDA to provide guidance for the industry regarding genetically engineered foods–such as GE salmon. This should include a safety review and a determination as to appropriate labeling.

On that note, we want to hear from you. Tell us what you’re concerned about most, whether it’s GMO, plastic bags, the services we provide – anything!
Ready, set, go –>
http://www.albertsons.com/gmo-feedback/

4 Responses to Responsibility, Sustainability & Community

  1. joyce 10/04/2013 at 8:59 pm

    do you make available the bad fruit and veggies for customers that want it for their compost piles?

    • Jana 06/05/2013 at 7:52 pm

      Hi Joyce, You’ll need to check with your local Albertsons store. Where do you usually shop? I’d be happy to provide their contact information for you! ~Jana

  2. Kathy 17/11/2013 at 7:56 pm

    Hi Jana,
    I am researching the life cycle of single use plastic shopping bags. Can you tell me where the bags delivered to stores in Pierce County are manufactured and where the bags deposited in your recycling bins are sent to be recycled? Do you know what products they are made into?
    Thanks for your help.

    • Customer Care Customer Care 25/11/2013 at 10:45 am

      The full bags from the recycle bins are combined with the film plastics from shipping and receiving and are returned to Albertsons distribution centers with reclamation or cardboard bales on Albertsons trucks. The distribution centers combine the bags with film plastic waste generated at the distribution center, baled and the material is sold to Trex™ Company. On average Albertsons distribution centers process over 4,500 tons of plastics annually. Trex™ has been purchasing Albertsons recycled grocery bags and plastic pallet wrap for 23 years. Trex™ manufactures composite lumber made from recycled plastic and broken pallets. The Trex™ lumber is used in various applications including decking, railing and fencing. ~Kimberly

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