Published 3 years ago.
About a 2 minute read.
Image: Plastic Pollution Coalition
Leading retailers CVS Health, Target and Walmart — joined by Kroger and Walgreens, and NGOs Conservation International and Ocean Conservancy — unite to tackle retail bag waste and invite others to join the effort.
The Center for the Circular Economy at Closed Loop
Partners has joined forces with leading
retailers CVS Health,
Target and Walmart aim to
reinvent the single-use plastic retail bag — with the goal of identifying,
testing and implementing viable design solutions and models that more
sustainably serve the purpose of the current retail bag.
Current alternatives to the plastic retail bag have yet to garner industry-wide
support or widespread use by the public. As momentum and debate around plastic
gained steam in the US in 2014, so did a preponderance of reusable
with many major retailers developing their own. But, since the onset of
COVID, many retailers
worldwide have stopped allowing customers to use their own, reusable shopping
bags; leading to a resurgence in plastic-bag pollution along with the overall
flood of single-use plastic due to the
Closed Loop Partners’ Consortium to Reinvent the Retail
Bag convenes the US’
largest and most influential retailers to think outside the bag; and drive
long-term, transformational thinking to address a complex global waste
challenge. To accelerate innovation for much-needed solutions, the retail
partners have collectively committed more than $15 million to launch the Beyond
the Bag Initiative.
“We know how important it is to bring our customers along on our sustainability
journey, keeping in mind that most are looking for convenience with minimal
environmental impact,” says Eileen Howard Boone, SVP of Corporate Social
Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer at CVS Health.
“This collaboration with Target, Walmart and other like-minded retailers and
innovators allows for collective reach that can be truly impactful.”
The Beyond the Bag Initiative also includes Kroger and Walgreens, and
Conservation International and Ocean Conservancy as Environmental
Advisory Partners. The historic, three-year Consortium welcomes additional
retailers to join in to help create a less wasteful future. The Consortium aims
to take a holistic view of the challenge and solutions, aligning consumer
convenience and product innovation with the equally important infrastructure for
recovery or reuse of any alternatives developed.
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New design solutions to serve the function of today’s retail bag will be
solicited from around the world through the Consortium’s global Innovation
Challenge — in partnership
with global design firm IDEO — with an initial focus on implementation in
the US. The Challenge invites innovators, suppliers, designers and other
problem-solvers to submit their ideas for game-changing sustainable bag
solutions. Closed Loop Partners will also launch a Circular Accelerator, develop
potential piloting opportunities and aim to make infrastructure investments in
support of the development of market-ready solutions.
Founding Consortium Partners CVS Health, Target and Walmart are calling on other
retail leaders — from general merchandise to grocery, apparel, pharmacy, home
goods and beyond — to get involved. Interested retailers: contact Closed Loop Partners at [email protected].
Published Jul 21, 2020 8am EDT / 5am PDT / 1pm BST / 2pm CEST