Waste Reduction Week was October 18 – 24, 2021.
At SPUD, Every Week is Waste Reduction Week.
Here at SPUD, we’re always looking for new ways to reduce our waste and become more sustainable. As an online grocery store who also has brick-and mortar locations in BC and Alberta, we have a unique opportunity to reduce waste at various points along our supply chain. Reducing waste is not only important to us, but also to our customers. Here’s an update on how we’re fighting waste every day and why you can feel good about shopping with us. How are you making a difference for Waste Reduction Week?
- Reusable Bins and Sleeves – Every reusable bin that SPUD delivers groceries in is roughly equivalent to three plastic shopping bags worth of groceries. We have a bin washer which sanitizes the bins so they can be reused again and again. We also wash and reuse our freezer jackets. Our online delivery business grew so quickly during the pandemic that in order to keep up with demand, we started delivering some orders in cardboard boxes. While we hope all our deliveries will eventually be in bins again, we’ve come up with a creative way to give this cardboard a second life.
- Cardboard Shredder – This summer as part of a pilot project we got a snazzy new cardboard shredder for our Edmonton warehouse. The cardboard shredder allows us to wrap glass bottles and other breakable items in recycled cardboard, eventually eliminating the need for protective plastic between our warehouse and customers. The pilot project has been a huge success and we plan on installing at cardboard shredder at our Vancouver and Calgary warehouses soon.
- Soft Plastic Recycling – We have partnered with a private recycling company in order to recycle the flexible plastic packaging from our Be Fresh and Nature’s Path products. This program aims to tackle single-use flexible plastic that isn’t accepted by curbside recycling programs.
- Takeback Program – We take back glass jars for Earnest Ice Cream, Avalon milk & Jamjar. When you purchase any products from these vendors, make sure that you return the (clean) packaging in your SPUD bin so we can recycle it for you.
- ‘Surplus’ Food Donations – Approximately 58% of the food produced in Canada is lost or wasted each year, and this creates 56.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide-equivalent emissions. As an online grocery store, SPUD’s food is handled at fewer touchpoints than traditional grocery stores, this greatly reduces the opportunities for food spoilage. When SPUD does have excess food from our operations, we donate it to local charities such as The Leftovers Foundation. This ensures that our excess food stays out of landfills and gets to our community members in need.
- Food Surplus to Farmers – creating compost out of surplus food. Our farmer partners such as Blue Mountain Biodynamic Farms us this compost for livestock and farming to create new food and a circular economy.
- Carpooling your Groceries – When we plan our deliveries, we group customers by postal code and use software that optimizes our delivery routes to be as efficient as possible. This helps to keep our emissions from vehicles as low possible, because our trucks and trikes take the shortest path possible. Research shows that this type of grocery delivery enables us to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than half, compared to if customers went to the grocery store themselves!
- Imperfect Produce – We love their perfect imperfections. SPUD sells imperfect produce – for those who like fighting waste and great prices at the same time