ALDI US has joined the US Plastics Pact, a collaborative, solutions-driven initiative aimed at creating a path towards a circular economy for plastics in the United States by 2025. The first North American Pact of its kind, the US Plastics Pact is a collaboration led by The Recycling Partnership, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Ellen MacArthur Foundation and sets a strategy to create scalable solutions across sectors in an effort to drive significant change.
The US Plastics Pact convenes more than 60 brands, NGOs, government agencies and retailers, like ALDI, across the plastics value chain to bring one voice to US packaging through coordinated initiatives and innovative solutions for rethinking products, packaging and business models.
“The global impact of plastics use cannot and should not be ignored by any business,” said Joan Kavanaugh, Vice President of Corporate Buying at ALDI US. “At ALDI, we’ve already begun finding ways to eliminate the plastics we don’t need and are innovating to uncover ways in which the plastics we do need can be kept in the economy and out of the environment – but we want to do even more. We are thrilled to join the US Plastics Pact and look forward to collaborating with its other members to drive action toward large-scale, collective change among the grocery industry and beyond.”
As a founding Activator of the US Plastics Pact, ALDI US, along with other members of the pact, has agreed to contribute toward these four ambitious goals:
- Define a list of packaging to be designated as problematic or unnecessary by 2021 and take measures to eliminate them by 2025.
- By 2025, all plastic packaging is 100 percent reusable, recyclable or compostable.
- By 2025, undertake ambitious actions to effectively recycle or compost 50 percent of plastic packaging.
- By 2025, the average recycled content or responsibly sourced bio-based content in plastic packaging will be 30 percent.
While the US Plastics Pact is complementary to and follows the ambitious precedents set by the existing global network of Plastic Pacts, it will be tailored to meet the unique needs and challenges of the US market. The US pact will reflect national priorities and realities, while still propelling the nation closer to other developed nations in its management of plastic waste.
“Together through the US Plastics Pact, we will ignite system change to accelerate progress toward a circular economy,” said Sarah Dearman, Vice President of Circular Ventures for The Recycling Partnership. “The US Pact will accelerate system-wide change by inspiring and supporting upstream innovation through a coordinated national strategy, creating a unified framework and enabling members to accelerate progress toward our ambitious 2025 sustainability goals. Members’ full participation will be vital to reaching our shared goals.”
In addition to the US Plastics Pact ambitions, ALDI US has committed to making its packaging more sustainable through its focus on recyclability across all operations, overall plastics reduction efforts and supplier partnerships to improve fiber sourcing.
Additionally, ALDI US has not offered single-use plastic grocery bags for more than four decades and encourages shoppers to bring their own reusable bags. By company estimates, this progressive business decision has helped keep approximately 15 billion single-use plastic bags out of landfills and oceans.
ALDI US will abide by transparent, annual reporting, guided by WWF’s ReSource: Plastic Footprint Tracker, which will be used to document annual progress against the US Plastics Pact’s four goals. The first task of the founding members of the US Plastics Pact will be to establish a “roadmap” in Q1 2021 to identify key milestones and national solutions to achieving the US targets and realize a circular economy in which plastic never becomes waste.