Waste and Recycling


How we’re tackling packaging and plastic waste

We love to see our customers taking such a keen interest in the environment. We aim to make sustainable choices affordable to all and to fully support our customers, both young and old, to live environmentally friendly lives.

We are certainly onboard with innovative and new initiatives to help tackle the harmful effects of plastics on the environment and are excited to see how passionate our customers are towards making a difference. We too hate to see packaging harming the environment and we aim to do what we can do to prevent it and make all our packaging easy to recycle where we can.

We also hate food going to waste and so we hope that you understand the benefits which plastic packaging brings in ensuring all of our food remains safe, and enables us to provide our customers with high quality products which stay fresh for longer.

Having listened to you, and customers like you, we announced, in March 2018, an ambitious 10 point pledge to help us tackle the issue of plastic and packaging pollution. As well as this we have committed to being a founding member of WRAP’s new cross-sector initiative.

The Aldi 10 Plastic and Packaging Pledges

1. By 2022 Aldi aims for 100% of all own label packaging to be recyclable, reusable or compostable (where it does not have a detrimental effect on product quality or safety, or increase food waste)

2. By 2025 Aldi aims to achieve 100% recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging across all products (where it does not have a detrimental effect on product quality or safety, or increase food waste)

3. By 2025, Aldi aims to reduce packaging by 50% (relative to 2015 baseline)

4. By 2025 Aldi aims for 50% of its packaging to be made from recycled material

5. Aldi will publicly report on its packaging progress annually starting in 2019

6. Aldi will educate customers on the importance of waste reduction (reduce, reuse, recycle) through its community programmes

7. All single-use plastic bags will be scrapped by the end of 2018

8. Aldi will work in partnership with other retailers to reduce its dependence on plastic

9. Aldi will establish a Packaging Task Force with its Buying Teams and external experts to deliver these goals

10. In principal Aldi supports a Deposit Return Scheme for plastic bottles and is conducting a feasibility study into how it could implement such a scheme

Food Waste Reduction

At Aldi we are committed to reducing food waste from farm to fork. That’s why we’ve set out to halve food waste in our operations by 2030 and support our customers and suppliers in managing their own food resources more efficiently.

Champions 12.3

In September 2017 we signed up to the ‘Friends of Champions 12.3’ network. This network consists of businesses and organisations that support halving food waste globally by 2025, in line with Target 12.3 of the UN Sustainability Goals. This means that we have committed to:

• Halving food waste in our own operations (2015 baseline)

• Assisting our suppliers and our customers to reduce their food waste

Courtauld 2025

In February 2016 Aldi GB became one of the first signatories to Courtauld 2025, a ground-breaking 10-year commitment in the food industry with the aims of:

• Reducing food and drink waste by a fifth per person

• Reducing associated greenhouse gases by a fifth per person

• Improving water stewardship

The commitment focuses on building relationships between growers, manufacturers and retailers to reduce waste across the supply chain. We will be working closely with WRAP to plan how we can maximise our impact over the ten years of the programme.

For more information on Courtauld 2025, please see here: http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/courtauld-commitment-2025

Helping Suppliers Waste Less

National Farmers Union’s Fruit and Veg Pledge

In 2015, Aldi UK became the first retailer to sign up to the National Farmers Union’s (NFU’s) Fruit and Veg Pledge. This means that we have committed, among other things, to:

• Build long-term relationships with growers

• Honour agreements and contract terms

• This helps our suppliers waste less by enabling them to align growing volumes more closely to demand

We also have an agreement with all of our suppliers allowing them to redistribute any Aldi branded surplus stock that becomes available to Company Shop. Company shop is the UK’s largest distributor of surplus food and fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG). To prevent food going to waste, Company Shop purchases surplus food stock from retailers and manufacturers to be sold at discounted prices.

Food Waste Reporting

At Aldi, we believe that what gets measured, gets managed. That’s why we closely monitor our food waste performance and are continually seeking to find ways to prevent losses wherever possible.

We’re now going a step further. As part of our commitments to reducing food waste, we promise to be open and transparent with our customers about our food waste performance and have prepared a summary of our data to help mark our progress so far.

Waste Management

At Aldi, we operate on a reduce, reuse, recycle basis across all our resources, right down to our waste. That’s why, since 2014, Aldi UK have sent no waste directly to landfill.

We are continually seeking to reduce the level of materials used across our supply chain and operations while getting the most from the resources we use:

• All the plastics used within our transportation chains are collected in store and sent for recycling. Even more amazing, the recycled material is then used to make our carrier bags and refuge sacks that can be purchased in store

• All the card used in our operations follows suit. We ensure this is all collected and sent for recycling, perhaps even ending up back in our stores once again

Waste management also forms an important part of our training within our operations. In 2018, we have sought to help employees understand the importance of waste reduction and the impact that they can have both at work and at home through our Behaviour Change Project.