The Schwarz Group set itself the goal of scrutinizing and meaningfully reducing the use of plastic in all divisions.
To this end, the company seeks out alternative materials and avoids the use of plastic in internal processes as much as possible. Suppliers are also actively encouraged to reduce plastic.
WE REDUCE – wherever sustainably possible – PLASTIC.
SINGLE USE PLASTIC BAGS
Lidl and Kaufland are taking leave of disposable plastic bags – in Germany and beyond.
Two years ago, Lidl Germany voluntarily decided to take a pioneering role and eliminated standard plastic bags with thicknesses of between 15 to 50 micrometers from all of its 3,200 stores; Kaufland followed in 2019. In the meantime, disposable carrier bags can no longer be purchased in more than 20 countries; both retail divisions will have delisted them in the remaining countries by the end of 2019. Lidl and Kaufland are now focused on reusable bags made of certified cotton, or on sturdy tote bags which are more sustainable since they can be used time and again.
Kaufland and Lidl already offer a broad assortment of unpackaged fruits and vegetables. To make it easier to transport the produce home safely, both retail divisions are now offering long-lasting, multi-use net bags. If used multiple times they are more environmentally-friendly than the classic, transparent knot bags. The net bags, made of recyclable polyester, can hold up to five kilos of fruit and vegetables, are reusable and can be washed in a machine at 30 degrees C. These multi-use net bags from Lidl and Kaufland are already being offered in many countries, and the rollout in all other countries is planned for mid-2020.
In order to reduce global plastic consumption for transport and storage the Schwarz Group introduced a narrower roll of plastic to wrap its goods in 2015.
Given Lidl’s annual global demand is approximately 3.1 million rolls, this seemingly small change has significant effects. This measure saves about 524 tons of plastic each year. Moreover, the plastic wrap is 100% recyclable.
For ordering fruit and vegetables, Lidl in Germany uses cord instead of plastic wrap.
If implemented globally, this could prevent around 85% of plastic wrap used for fruits and vegetables and reduce the annual plastic demand by around 428 tons.
The thinner Lidl bread bags are another example of how the Schwarz Group reduces plastic use. This measure minimized the annual plastic demand by around 394 tons.
Using narrower plastic wrap, cord and thinner bread bags has saved more than 1,300 tons of plastic annually – the equivalent weight of 7 blue whales or 673 giraffes.
Discover more about sustainable package design here: