Whenever you see someone walking out of a grocery store, you will see the walk with a cart filled with products in plastic bags.
Even if all of these plastic bags are disposed of in the correct recycling areas, not all of it will be recycled. Studies have shown that not even 20 percent of the plastic bags put for recycling will ever be recycled.
However, on the positive note, ALDI the grocery store chain is planning to change the way they work with plastic bags.
Located in 35 states, more than 40 million customers buy their groceries from ALDI US. This grocery chain is taking a huge step to save the environment. ALDI stores sell almost 90% of their products and because of that, they will be able to change the way they package their products in the next six years.
By doing so, ALDI is setting an example for other grocery stores in the US so that they can make the same changes as them.
ALDI’s Goals by 2025
According to ALDI’s press release, its products’ packaging will be completely recyclable, reusable, or compostable.
Additionally, the grocery store is reducing the material they’re using for packaging by 15%. However, these are not the only changes that ALDI plans to make. According to their press release, they have additional goals that they plan to complete by 2020. Every packaging will include a How2Recycle label which will help people understand how to recycle the item. A private-label product packaging will also be introduced in 2020 by ALDI which will help customers to reuse them.
Additional Steps ALDI is Taking to Protect the Environment
Single-use grocery bags were never offered in ALDI’s grocery store. By doing so, they’ve kept almost 15 billion plastic bags out of the environment. With this, ALDI is showing the other grocery stores that there’s no need to pack the items in plastic bags so that people will buy from their store and instead, they should try and make a change that will save our environment.
The CEO of ALDI US, Jason Hard, States that “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.”
ALDI is trying hard to follow rules that will protect the environment. ALDI partnered with How2Recycle in 2018 and together they’ve made an effort to educate customers on the proper way of recycling packaging. Additionally, the grocery store recycled more than 250,000 tons of materials in the past year.
The ALDI Corporate Responsibility program plans to reduce the waste of food, support communities, and by partnering with Feeding America, they plan to aid families that have been struck by a natural disaster.
These initiatives are setting a great example for other grocery stores, not only in the U.S. but all over the world. These grocery stores should do much more to protect the environment.
9% Of The Plastics Was Recycled From 1950 to 2015
Sadly, data numbers show that only 9% of the entire plastic that was produced in the last 65 years was recycled. The most plastic waste was done by plastic used for packaging and containers. Over 14 million tons of plastic was left not recycled.
David Pinsky, Greenpeace Senior Oceans Campaigner states “It’s important that ALDI US and other retailers act with the greatest urgency and ambition to eliminate problematic plastics. While the company might intend to make packaging recyclable or composted, it does not mean that packaging will actually be recycled or composted. We encourage ALDI US to accelerate efforts to reduce throwaway plastics and build systems of reuse for the sake of our planet and communities impacted by the pollution crisis.”
As of right now, the recycling of plastic has been increased up to 20%.
Additional Things We Can Do To Help
Many people don’t know how much plastic is used in our lives. Here are just some of the products that contain plastic: shower curtains, disposable diapers, packaging of personal care products, medical devices, non-biodegradable glitter, gum, jar lids, and many more products.
Luckily, we can do many things to reduce plastic use and be part of the initiative that will help the planet.
These are 10 things you can do to help the environment with the use of plastic.
- Stop using plastic straws – Instead of using plastic straws, invest your money in straws made of stainless steel. Not only is it eco-friendly and reusable, but it will save you money in the long run.
- Lower the usage of plastic at home – Instead of storing leftovers in plastic containers, store them in containers made of glass. By doing this, your health will benefit from it as well.
- Purchase fresh vegetables and fruits – Instead of buying fruit that is already cut and pre-packaged, go to a farmers market and find yourself some fresh fruit and vegetables. These vegetables and fruits are organic and much healthier for your body.
- Do not store food in plastic bags – By storing your food in jars or glass containers, it will last much longer than storing it in plastic bags.
- Use reusable shopping bags – You will never want to go back to using plastic bags after making this switch.
- Use a reusable water bottle – Make sure you bring a reusable water bottle no matter where you go instead of using the single-use water bottles.
- Buy food from bulk bins – Use a reusable container while you’re purchasing. This way you’ll make a bigger impact on the environment.
- Bring your coffee mug – Some coffee shops offer a discount on their coffee if you bring your container.
- Use cloth diapers – Instead of using conventional ones, use cloth diapers. This will make sure that your baby will have a future to grow up in.
- Switch plastic cutting boards with ones made of wood – Wood cutting boards look much nicer than the plastic ones.
Even if we as consumers make the needed changes to reduce plastic waste, companies need to take initiative and make an effort to influence customers and take responsibility to help the planet.