Lidl slashes food waste by almost half and cuts plastic packaging

Lidl has reduced food waste by almost half (43%) since 2016 as it remains on track to hit its 50% reduction target by 2030.

The discount grocer published its fourth ‘Good Food’ report today (13 November) which updates on progress towards meeting its key environmental targets.

To limit food waste, Lidl provided over six million meals to charities in 2022 and prevented nearly 9,000 tonnes from being binned through the sale of 1.7m ‘Too Good To Waste’ boxes – an initiative which allows shoppers to purchase 5kg of damaged, discoloured or deteriorated fruit and veg that can still be eaten for £1.50.

The discounter has also looked to reduce waste in the form of plastic packaging with 95% of its own-brand packaging now recyclable, reusable, renewable or refillable.

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Changes in stores include an increase in loose produce, compostable fruit and veg bags, which can be recycled at home as food waste caddy liners, and new recyclable packaging on mushrooms.

Overall, Lidl has cut the amount of plastic packaging across its own-brand ranges by 29% since 2017 as it looks to achieve 40% by 2025.

With over 90% of Lidl’s carbon emissions coming from its supply chain and use of its products, the retailer is also working closely with suppliers on carbon reduction, such as partnering with The Rivers Trust to fund three water catchment projects to mitigate supply chain risks.

As of February 2023, 455 of the discounter’s British fruit and veg suppliers were LEAF Marque certified, meaning they have robust water and nature conservation plans in place. The retailer said this total would reach 100% by the end of this year.

Lidl GB senior CSR manager Mark Newbold said: “At Lidl, we strive to work in a way that benefits our people, our producers, and the planet. This means finding new, more sustainable ways to deliver on quality and value for shoppers.

“Little changes make a big difference – and we know they matter to our customers. From making more of our packaging recyclable and incorporating circularity into how we operate, to increasing the amount of food we donate to our charity partners – we’re proud to have made such positive strides and we’re doubling down in order to meet the ambitious goals we have set.”



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