Walmart has announced a set of plastic waste reduction commitments that are expected to impact more than 30,000 stock keeping units (SKU).
Under the plan, the company will focus on its private brand packaging, enhancing efforts to reduce plastic waste in Walmart US and Sam’s Club operations. It will also encourage other national suppliers to set similar packaging goals.
As part of the commitments, the retailer intends to transform the packaging of its private brand to 100% recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable packaging, as well as achieve at least 20% post-consumer recycled content in private brand packaging by 2025.
Walamart also plans to use the How2Recycle label for its food and consumable private brand packaging by 2022, work with suppliers to eliminate non-recyclable polymerisation of vinyl chloride (PVC) material in general merchandise packaging by 2020, and reduce private brand plastic packaging where possible.
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 recognise 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.”
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In addition, the retailer is currently offering low-cost alternatives to single-use plastic consumable products such as straws, cutlery and disposable tabletops, as well as recyclable shrink wrap. It will also help improve access to in-store plastic bag and film recycling bins for customers and encourage suppliers to include the How2Recycle label on their packs.
Last month, Walmart Canada unveiled its new Charter on Plastics initiative to reduce plastic waste across its operations as part of its global commitment to have 100% recyclable private brand packaging by 2025.