SA retailers commit to waste initiatives

The South Australian Independent Retailers (SAIR) has launched the ‘Food Waste and Recycling Strategy for Foodland and IGA Supermarkets 2021-2025’. The strategy is said to be the first of its kind.

With support from the Marshall Liberal government, South Australian businesses will get help to become more circular as stores operating under the Foodland, IGA and Friendly Grocer supermarkets brands commit to more than 20 waste initiatives in areas like food recovery, reducing packaging and plastics, educating customers and training staff in best practice waste avoidance.

Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs says the launch of the strategy last week will support the owners and managers of South Australia’s independently owned supermarkets to immediately activate new practices and systems to reduce the amount of waste generated at their stores and improve resource recovery, especially targeting food waste.

“The Marshall Liberal government is committed to unlocking the potential of a circular economy in SA and this strategy builds on the work we have already done including being the first state in the country to ban single-use plastics,” he says.

“Independent retailers in SA are a key driver for our state economy and that economic impact can continue to grow as independent retailers adopt a more circular economy.

“Food waste remains one of our most pressing challenges, and we must commit to diverting our food waste away from landfill and into our compost industry, which is not only good for the environment, but it creates jobs as well.

“Last year, I launched our ‘Statewide Waste Strategy’ and this year I launched the first targeted food waste strategy in Australia to work towards zero avoidable food waste going to landfill.”

SAIR CEO Colin Shearing says there are more than 200 independently owned supermarket stores across SA employing approximately 11,000 workers which contribute more than $2 billion to the state economy.

“Our customers expect sustainability and responsibility to be built into our business model. This Strategy is a blueprint for a more circular economy,” he says.

“Foodland metropolitan stores have committed to 10 waste initiatives from the new strategy by 2025, with regional stores committed to at least seven waste initiatives by 2025.”

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