Lidl GB has highlighted significant progress in reducing food waste, expanding charity partnerships, and implementing sustainability initiatives.
Announced in its latest “Good Food” report, since 2016, Lidl has slashed food waste by nearly half (43%), putting it well on track to achieve its 50% reduction target by 2030.
According to the German supermarket chain, the achievement is partly attributed to providing more meals to charities, surpassing 6 million meals donated in 2022 alone.
Additionally, Lidl prevented nearly 9,000 tonnes of food waste through the sale of 1.7 million “Too Good to Waste” boxes, each containing approximately 5 kg of fruit and vegetables.
Packaging waste reduction has been another key focus, with 95% of Lidl’s own-brand packaging now recyclable, reusable, renewable, or refillable. This includes loose produce, compostable fruit and veg bags, and new recyclable packaging for mushrooms. Overall, Lidl has cut plastic packaging across its own-brand ranges by 29% since 2017, aiming to achieve a 40% reduction by 2025.
Over 90% of Lidl’s carbon emissions stem from its supply chain and product use. The report emphasises how the retailer is collaborating closely with suppliers on carbon reduction projects and partners with The Rivers Trust to fund water catchment projects, mitigating risks in the supply chain. Moreover, 45% of Lidl’s British fruit and veg suppliers are LEAF Marque certified, indicating sustainable farming practices, and this figure is expected to reach 100% by the end of 2023.
The company said its sustainability efforts also extend to supporting customers in making eco-conscious choices, pledging to halve the environmental impact of customers’ shopping baskets by 2030 through the WWF’s Retailers’ Commitment for Nature. Other signatories of this initiative include Sainsbury’s, Marks & Spencers Co-op, Tesco, and Waitrose.
Mark Newbold, Senior CSR Manager at Lidl GB, underscored the company’s commitment to sustainability: “At Lidl, we strive to work in a way that benefits our people, our producers, and the planet. Little changes make a big difference, and we know they matter to our customers. We’re proud of our progress and are doubling down to meet our ambitious goals.”
Lidl says it is exploring innovative ways to improve sustainability. In 2022, it trialled smart refills, allowing customers to use refillable bottles with a choice of four Lidl own brand laundry detergents. It is also assessing whether cross-retailer standardisation is feasible and trialling the Eco-Score environmental rating for products to help shoppers make informed choices.
In October, rival supermarket Sainsbury’s completed its state-of-the-art wind farm, which will power much of its operations. In the same month, Marks & Spencer introduced the first fully recyclable coffee cup from a major high street coffee retailer.
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