US-based multinational retail company Walmart has announced new plastic packaging waste reduction commitments as part its efforts to minimize plastic pollution.
Walmart has undertaken new initiatives to advance the sustainability of its private brand packaging and promote consumer-friendly recycling labels.
The new commitments, which are expected to impact more than 30,000 SKUs, will help reduce plastic waste in Walmart US and Sam’s Club operations.
The new initiatives are intended at advancing the sustainability of the retailer’s private brand packaging and promoting consumer-friendly recycling labels.
As part of the initiative, the retail giant will collaborate with US private brand suppliers to achieve 100% recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable packaging for its private brand packaging by 2025.
The commitments also include targeting around 20% post-consumer recycled content in private brand packaging by 2025, labeling 100% of food and consumable private brand packaging with the How2Recycle label by 2022, working with suppliers to reduce the non-recyclable packaging material PVC in general merchandise packaging by 2020 and decrease private brand plastic packaging.
To support the initiative, Walmart is offering low cost and high quality alternatives for single use plastic consumable products such as straws, cutlery and disposable tabletops, as well as providing access to in-store plastic bag and film recycling bins for customers.
Walmart Foundation is also backing multiple circular economy initiatives such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Beyond 34 project, which is a multi-stakeholder initiative to increase the current 34% recycling rate in the US by enhancing recycling and recovery rates in local communities.
The retailer also noted that it diverted 81% of unsold products, packaging and other waste materials from landfills in the US by the end of 2017.
Walmart global sustainability senior vice president Laura Phillips said: “As a global retailer that has set an ambitious aspirational goal to create zero waste, we fully recognize that reducing plastic waste by increasing packaging circularity is an area where Walmart can lead.
“Today’s announcement marks another key milestone in our ongoing journey of working with our private brand and national brand suppliers to deliver access to high-quality, sustainable products as part of the Walmart everyday low price promise.”