Ahead of Earth Day 2021, Aldi has shared five insider tips to help people shop more sustainably.
From finding ways to reduce the need for plastic packaging, to minimising food waste and supporting Irish suppliers, there’s plenty of smalls steps that can help to make your shop more sustainable.
John Curtin, Group Buying Director, Aldi Ireland said: “Making simple changes to your shopping habits can go a long way to reducing the environmental impact of your weekly shop. We’re always looking for new ways to make it easier for customers to shop sustainably at Aldi, while also pushing ourselves in equal measure to be greener every day.”
Choosing loose fruit and vegetables instead of multipacks could make a big difference to the amount of plastic packaging needed, and the same goes for other types of products where additional plastic is used for multipacks.
Aldi is committed to eliminating plastic wherever possible as it works towards its target of halving the amount of plastic packaging used by the end of 2025. Recent initiatives include 100% plastic-free packaging on a range of Easter products, the removal of plastic straws from all of its own-label drinks cartons, and the elimination of plastic shrink-wrap on its own-label multipack soft drink cans.
2. Don’t forget to recycle
If an item requires plastic packaging to stay fresh, try to choose products with recyclable packaging instead where possible.
When it comes to recycling, empty and rinse any residual food waste on items you wish to recycle, and squash items down in your recycling bin to fit more into each collection. Aldi uses industry standard labelling on all products to advise you how to recycle our packaging.
Since introducing our plastic-reduction strategy, Aldi has removed more than 2,050 tonnes of virgin plastic from its 146 Irish stores in addition to replacing almost 930 tonnes of non-recyclable material with recyclable alternatives.
3. Buy Irish
Food miles can really add up, so always consider buying products from local, Irish sources to cut the need for imports and reduce the carbon footprint of your weekly shop.
Aldi has invested more than €3,000,000 in its Grow with Aldi supplier development programme since 2018, which provides an opportunity for small and medium Irish food and drink companies to gain a listing in Aldi’s 145 stores.
4. Tackle food waste
It pays to be organised with your weekly shop – saving you time in the aisles and reducing any food waste by buying unnecessary items. To avoid this, make a shopping list and plan your food shop for the whole week to ensure you only get what you need.
Knowing your date labels is also key to preventing good food from being thrown away. Remember, a ‘Use By’ date on a product is there for food safety reasons, meaning you can eat food right up to the date, but not after unless you freeze it. ‘Best Before’, on the other hand, is about quality. While food should be safe to eat after the date, it may no longer be at its best.
Aldi is undertaking a variety of initiatives, including its surplus food donation programme in partnership with FoodCloud, to help its suppliers to reduce their waste. Aldi has recently donated an additional €25,000 in retail value of non-surplus food to FoodCloud as the charity has experienced ongoing record demand for its services due to Covid-19.
5. Go green
When it comes to shopping more sustainably, it’s not just about how you shop, but where you shop too.
There are lots of ways your supermarket can improve its green credentials, so keep an eye on what they’re up to alongside your own efforts.
Aldi has continued to work towards being more sustainable across its stores and business activities, and was awarded the Green Retailer of the Year award at the 2020 Green Awards in February 2020.
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