One goal includes recycling corrugated cardboard waste into private-label take-and-bake pizza boxes. Cardboard waste is gathered and transported to Indiana’s Pratt Industries box plant where it is then recycled into Walmart pizza boxes.
The recycling measure is expected to divert 8,600 tons of cardboard waste from landfills. Approximately 125,000 trees will also be spared by recycling the corrugated cardboard. The innovative approach is one such way to close the loop on waste, help the environment and reduce resources as well as costs.
As the company website boldly states, recycling corrugated boxes isn’t the only new sustainable step the giant retailer is taking. As part of the retailer’s Zero Waste initiative, the company includes the following long-term goals:
- “Sandwiching” all sorts of loose plastic between layers of cardboard, bundling it all together in large bales and sending to processors for recycling, millions of pounds of trash has been diverted from landfills. In fact, the “sandwich baling” effort has diverted 1,100 tons of plastic from landfills.
- A reduction in packaging on a global basis by 5 percent.
- The Plastic Bag Initiative includes a 33 percent reduction in plastic shopping waste at each store by 2013, resulting in a reduction of an estimated 9 billion plastic bags.
- In an effort to reduce plastic shopping bags, the company sells several styles of reusable shopping bags made out of recycled materials. The larger bag, from Sam’s Club, can be recycled when the bag is no longer used.
- In less than a year’s time, more than 57 percent of waste generated by Sam’s Clubs and Walmart stores was redirected.
- As of September, 2009, more than 1.3 million pounds of aluminum, 182 million pounds of plastic, 12.4 million pounds of office paper and nearly 19 million pounds of plastic hangers have been redirected from landfills.
- Currently, 25 billion pounds of cardboard, has been sent to paper mills for recycling.
- Walmart’s Tire and Lube Express Centers recycled 16 million tires in 2008. Some of those tires were recycled into the non-toxic and latex-free Majestic Rubber Mulch.