An increasing number of grocery stores are ditching single-use plastics to help curb the amount of synthetic materials that end up in landfills around the world. Trader Joe’s is the most recent business to reduce plastic use in stores across the country, a move that comes after a Greenpeace initiative that garnered close to 100,000 signatures.
In 2018, Trader Joe’s vowed to use more sustainable packaging to help decrease the 1 million pounds of waste it generates annually from plastics. A big chunk of that waste comes from single-use plastic bags, which the outlet has already stopped offering to customers. The company has also stopped using plastic in the produce section, replacing the traditional bags with biodegradable alternatives.
“As a neighborhood grocery store, we feel it is important for us to be the great neighbor our customers deserve. Part of that means better managing our environmental impact,” Trader Joe’s Kenya Friend-Daniel shared.
Plastic waste is a growing issue for countries around the globe. Only a quarter of plastics manufactured in the states are recycled, despite the fact that it takes significantly more energy to make plastic from scratch.
If we increased recycling efforts up to three quarters, then we could save around a billion gallons in oil production and free up some 44 million yards of landfill every year.
Trader Joe’s is not the first business to get rid of single-use plastics and hopefully will not be the last. Several grocery retailers in the United Kingdom have also removed single-use plastics from their stores. McDonald’s has also vowed to replace its packaging with sustainable materials within a decade, while Evian will go completely plastic free by next year.
Reducing our reliance on single-use plastic is the first step in eliminating plastic waste, which often ends up in the ocean. With more and more companies like Trader Joe’s ditching single-use plastics for more eco-friendly options, we can only hope that other businesses will follow their lead and cut down on plastic use at a larger scale.
Via Eco Watch
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