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USA: Whole Foods Bans Plastic Straws, Makes Packaging Changes

Source: Progressive Grocer

Whole Foods Market will eliminate plastic straws by July 2019 and replace its rotisserie chicken containers with plastic bags that use 70 percent less plastic than the hard packaging. 

Both of these changes come after the grocer already reduced the size of its plastic produce bags earlier this year. The company said that these three combined initiatives will reduce about 800,000 pounds of plastic each year. 

At Whole Foods Market-operated venues in the stores, such as cafes and juice bars, customers can request recyclable, compostable and Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper straws.

“For almost 40 years, caring for the environment has been central to our mission and how we operate,” said A.C. Gallo, president and chief merchandising officer at Whole Foods Market. “We recognize that single-use plastics are a concern for many of our customers, team members and suppliers, and we’re proud of these packaging changes ... We will continue to look for additional opportunities to further reduce plastic across our stores.”

Whole Foods has almost 500 stores in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom. Under its parent company, Seattle-based Amazon, the retailer is No. 10 on Progressive Grocer’s 2019 Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.

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