Walmart and Sam’s Club Are Making All of Their Store-Brand Packaging Recyclable

Walmart shoppers everywhere can feel even better about their purchases soon. In addition to offering solid savings, Walmart has committed to using recyclable packaging for all private-label products by 2025. That’s right, there’s a big sustainability push going on at Walmart and Sam’s Club.

The company issued a statement on Tuesday explaining the waste-reduction initiative. Walmart (and Sam’s Club) is pledging to make strides toward sustainable business practices and promoting consumer-friendly recycling labels. The changes will impact more than 30,000 items.

They hope the plan will encourage additional eco-friendly updates throughout the industry, with other national brand suppliers aiming for likeminded packaging goals. The recycling playbook makes it even easier for others to follow along. It includes information to help companies introduce recyclable packaging and recycled content goals. The recycling playbook also provides background on different types of plastic packaging and how these materials can be recycled.

recycling photo
Getty Images | Noam Galai

Walmart outlined several specific goals to help its U.S. private-brand suppliers work toward more sustainability and encourage consumers to recycle. In addition to making packaging recyclable, the retailer wants to incorporate at least 20 percent post-consumer recycled content in packaging.

The retail giant has also said it realizes that creating recyclable packaging doesn’t do any good if it’s difficult or confusing for consumers to recycle. As a result, the company will label all food and consumable private brand packaging with the user-friendly How2Recycle label by 2022. During the last year, more than 800 Walmart private-label suppliers included How2Recycle labels on products.

These changes mean working closely with suppliers to eliminate materials that can’t be recycled from the start. Namely, Walmart says it will coordinate with suppliers to eliminate PVC by 2020. And, overall, they will also reduce plastic packaging whenever possible.

All these measures could help Walmart get a bit closer to a much bigger goal of achieving zero plastic waste. “As a global retailer that has set an ambitious aspirational goal to create zero waste, we fully recognize that reducing plastic waste by increasing packaging circularity is an area where Walmart can lead,” says Laura Phillips, senior vice president, global sustainability for Walmart Inc. Today’s announcement marks another key milestone in our ongoing journey of working with our private brand and national brand suppliers to deliver access to high-quality, sustainable products as part of the Walmart everyday low price promise.”

Do initiatives like this make you more likely to shop at Walmart and Sam’s Club?

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About the Author
Jennifer Nied
Jennifer Nied is a freelance writer and editor based in New York City. She focuses on beauty, wellness, and travel stories with a background covering the spa industry.

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