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Retail giant wins two green awards

A retail giant has won two prestigious environmental awards in the space of one week to mark its commitment to reducing waste. ASDA has scooped awards for the Most Environmentally Friendly Retailer and the Multiple Environmental Retailer of the Year at the Retail Industry Awards for the latter and the People in Retail Awards for the former. The judges were impressed by ASDAs commitment to reducing waste, eliminating packaging and saving energy. In 2005, the company signed up to the Courtauld Commitment and is now working in partnership with the Waste & Resources Action Programme to reduce its packaging by 25% by 2008. To meet this pledge, ASDA has developed a new packaging policy around the waste hierarchy. Executive director for external and legal affairs John Longworth said: An example of ASDAs collaboration with its suppliers is the work done with Gilchrist [packaging company] around the new packaging of its organic line, briefed to develop environmentally responsible packaging guidelines which allowed removing up to 68% of pizza packaging and rising to 93% less packaging for grapefruit. ASDA has also asked for the removal of any unnecessary packaging components, for example, unnecessary labels. Longworth added: Recyclable wood-pulp trays were introduced in the produce category to create an earthy feel, and where plastic trays were necessary the suppliers were instructed to use food-grade materials.

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