GROCERY STORES AND SUPERMARKETS WASTE
CONSIDERATIONS AND EQUIPMENT
(For More Information Read the Article Below the Equipment - Material Table)
Waste & Recycling Equipment Category
Brief Description / Typical Application
Main Material Classes
(Select the materials below for additional information)
Up to 1,000
pound bales of Cardboard
Up to 800
pound bales of Shrink Wrap
Up to 1400 pound bales of Cardboard
36" Stockroom Baler
|Up to 250 lbs of Cardboard and 230 lbs of Shrink Wrap
|Bottle and Can Crusher
|Bottle and Can Crusher with Multiple Chambers for easy separation and baling of different materials.
Compactor hauled directly to the landfill.
Single Stream Self Contained Compactors
(with Two Compartments)
|Large volume Grocery Stores and Supermarkets can use one dual compartment compactor for processing both Recyclables and non-recyclables
|For large volumes of dry waste at Grocery Stores
Vertical Outdoor Compactors
|Versatile for many types of applications
Compacting Dumpsters are tipped onsite by Haulers
the trash in your existing 96 gal or 64 gal containers
crushing Fluorescent Bulbs
Waste Reduction and Recycling Tips for Grocery Stores & Supermarkets
The Grocery Store or Supermarket is one of the most highly visited locations for families and individuals. It is essential for all of us to have the staples our household needs to survive. Did you know that for the supermarket industry waste and recycling represent a growing business cost for their industry?
According to a London Times study, around 40% of materials that customers have in their shopping carts is not recyclable material. But for grocery stores themselves, 75-85% of the waste they generate is compostable or recyclable, giving them money-saving alternatives that are better for our environment.
Think of a supermarket’s many counters. You’ve got service deli, bakery, and seafood not to mention the rows and rows of dry grocery, canned goods and perishable or non-perishable items. Grocery stores generate significant amounts of cardboard, food waste and plastic. So how can supermarkets and the clients they serve get on board the recycling train?
Consumer Recycling Tips
So what can shoppers at grocery stores & supermarkets do? With in the world’s recent economic crisis many shoppers are looking to save money by recycling. Grocery stores want to gain new customers as well as keep ones they already have.
- Many grocery stores offer shoppers a five cent per bag discount if they bring in their own cloth bags or reuse plastic bags. The damage caused to the environment by plastics is great. By using recyclable bags you are reducing the amount of harmful chemicals that are being created.
- Grocery stores may even have cloth bags for sale right in the store. If they don’t, let your local grocery store know that they could be taking advantage of offering cloth bags for sale to their customers. The more bags used and carried the more advertising the store gets and it’s great for the environment.
- If you aren’t ready to make the change to plastic bags then use the old ones you have already.
- If you aren’t sure about making the investment in cloth bags, know that they will be paid off in no time at all. Soon you will be earning money while going green.
- Several grocery store chains are piloting recycling programs that allow customers to return plastic, glass and aluminum beverages via the use of RVMs or Reverse Vending Machines.
- These amazing machines take containers and refund deposits to customers. They also identify, sort, collect and process beverage containers.
- More than 65,000 of these machines exist around the world and contribute positively to consumers’ wallets and the environment.
Waste Reduction Tips for Supermarkets & Grocery Stores
So what can the grocery stores & supermarkets do to aid in recycling and waste reduction efforts? Besides offering your customers options for recycling and the environmental benefits that creates, supermarkets can go above and beyond to ensure they are meeting their profit margins and not generating additional waste, causing them extra fees in the long run.
- First off, does your supermarket have the correct waste disposal bins? Many supermarkets have rules that prohibit disposal of certain materials that can be recycled. These bins will help facilitate waste disposal for stores.
- Offer recycling opportunities to customers via a Reverse Vending Machine or other appropriate recycling and waste bins. Customers will recognize that you are a location they can go to assist their own recycling efforts.
- Does your supermarket have a food donation program? In order to eliminate food waste and have extra food go to a good cause many community food banks or organizations will come and pick up food from the supermarket so that it is not just thrown out. Set up an agreement with local agencies and ensure that recycling fits into the plan wherever possible.
- Check with your waste disposal company to ensure that they are following Earth-friendly standards. What happens to your waste and are there ways you can work together to increase the recycling and waste reduction.
- Research your state standards. Many states have created recycling program certification or green business certifications that encourage businesses to develop programs for recycling and reusing organics and other materials. Many times these programs are free and can have additional tax or monetary benefits to your business.
Case Study: Massachusetts Supermarket Recycling Program
The MassDEP (Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection) saw that at nearly 900,000 tons per year, food waste represented an estimated 19% of all commercial waste generated in the state of Massachusetts. Less than one-tenth of that total was being recycled, composted or diverted from disposal.
MASSDEP identified supermarkets as the major generator of organic wastes with more than 400 full-service grocery stores in the state discarding an estimated 90,600 tons of material per year.
Reducing Waste & Saving Money
Waste disposal represents a significant and growing business cost for the supermarket industry, particularly in Massachusetts where disposal fees range from $80 to $100 per ton.
As a retail sector, supermarkets operate on very slim profit margins. Since between 75 and 85 percent of the waste they generate is compostable or recyclable, sending their organics to large-scale composting operations or to farms for animal feed is a money-saving alternative to disposal, not to mention better for the environment.
Supermarkets across Massachusetts seem to agree. As of July 2010, more than 225 stores from seven major chains – Big Y Foods, Hannaford Bros., Roche Bros., Shaw’s, The Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. LLC, Wal-Mart Supercenters and Whole Foods Markets – were diverting organics to reuse or recycling and saving between $3,000 and $20,000 per location per year in disposal costs.
Supermarket Recycling Program Certification
MassDEP and the Massachusetts Food Association (MFA) in 2003 established the Supermarket Recycling Program Certification (SRPC) program. The initiative is to encourage full-service grocery stores to develop programs for recycling and reusing organics and other materials.
To participate in the voluntary program, a supermarket needs to establish and maintain a comprehensive recycling and reuse program, then document its efforts by submitting a certification to MassDEP. Participating stores save money and improve their compliance waste disposal bans which prohibit disposal of certain materials that should be recycled.
By obtaining SRPC status, a full-service grocery store can qualify for relief from some regulatory requirements. Specifically, truckloads of trash from that store are not subject to comprehensive inspection when they arrive at transfer stations or disposal facilities.
So the next time you are at a grocery store, bring reusable bags or even soda cans and plastic containers to recycle. Look for supermarkets that do their part in reducing their imprint on the environment. If your local store hasn’t started a recycling program yet, encourage them to do so. No matter what, at a grocery store you can always find things to buy in order to help the environment and save you money in the long run.
For assistance in determining the best approach for your particular facility, email WasteCare Corporation at email@example.com and in addition to your contact information, let us know the approximate volume of trash being hauled from your facility each week or month and the approximate waste hauling cost each month and we will be glad to give you some suggestions.
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