According to the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, there are more than 400 supermarkets in Massachusetts that are likely subject to the Commercial Organics Waste Ban. There are plenty of cost-effective ways that supermarkets and other food businesses can comply with the ban by reducing or diverting food waste. In a recently published article, Waste Dive presents various solutions to help grocery stores and supermarkets both reduce food waste and increase profitability. Through waste reduction activities, businesses also showcase their dedication to sustainability and social responsibility to their employees, customers, and partners.
Carefully tracking shrink helps grocers paint a clearer picture of how much food they are throwing away, as well as their margin for potential cost savings. Accurate and automated tracking systems can help grocers avoid overspending on inventory and disposal costs. Along with new technology adoption, companies such as Walmart and Kroger that are moving towards zero waste are finding success through other small changes, such as:
- Replacing individual cracked eggs, so grocers can continue to sell the rest of the carton without wasting millions of eggs every year.
- Adopting new expiration date labels, and dividing food into two categories: “Best if Used By” for nonperishable products, and “Use By” for foods that can spoil.
- Selling aesthetically rejected produce at discounted prices.
- Repurposing food items internally. For example, utilizing produce nearing the end of its shelf life in smoothies, pastries, soups, etc.
RecyclingWorks developed guidance on food waste prevention and food donation to help businesses in Massachusetts safely donate surplus food, including legal fact sheets from the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic on date labeling, liability protections, and tax incentives. If your business is interested in reducing your food waste, connect with a RecyclingWorks expert via our hotline: (888) 254-5525 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.