Waste is the one grocery store "product" where less is more ... a lot more.
PCC is a recognized "Best Workplace for Recycling," but our focus on waste management doesn't stop with our stores. Practices that reduce the amount of waste — on and off our premises — that is generated from packaging, food spoilage and supplies, and increase the opportunity for reusing or recycling materials, have been in place at PCC for many years.
Our waste management practices include:
Recycling programs for cardboard, computer equipment, wood pallets, plastic film and scrap metal that divert thousands of pounds of discarded items from local landfills.
Composting and donation programs for food waste. All locations have designated containers for food waste that is collected and turned into compost. We also donate past-sell-date food to several local nonprofit partners.
Supply reuse stations. All staff offices and common work areas have designated areas for office supplies that can be reused.
Take-back programs. We partner with the Cork Forest Conservation Alliance (CFCA) to collect at all stores wine bottle closures made from natural cork. Through the CFCA’s Cork ReHarvest program, corks are recycled to make useful products that support the local wine industry.
We also host receptacles for plastic bags at stores not supported by curbside residential plastic bag recycling, as well as collection containers for used clothing and books sponsored by two non-profit partners at two locations.
Two-sided printing. All of our check stand printers produce double-sided receipts, using 25 to 35 percent less paper per transaction than single-sided receipts. All office printers and copiers are set to print and copy double-sided pages.
Reusable shopping bags. We encourage customers to bring their own reusable bags for shopping through a five-cent per bag rebate incentive, friendly reminder signage, and offering sturdy, attractive shopping totes at cost. In 2007, 25 percent of our shoppers either brought their own bags or elected not to use new paper ones for their baggable purchases. By 2010, that number jumped to 67 percent of PCC shoppers.
Bulk grocery and personal care products. We offer a wide variety of organic and non-organic bulk food staples, water, produce, and skin and hair care items that keep waste and packaging to a minimum. We make shopping for bulk items easy with a online, searchable bulk database.