ALDI is Unstoppable, Earning the Environmental Protection Agency’s Store Certification and Re-Certification Excellence Awards for the Fourth Year in a Row

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ALDI leads the industry in decarbonizing grocery stores with eco-friendly natural refrigerants

BATAVIA, Ill., Sept. 21, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — As ALDI continues its rapid expansion across the United States, soon becoming the third-largest grocery chain in the country, the retailer remains committed to meeting its aggressive sustainability goals, one of which is focused on reducing its greenhouse gas emissions.

ALDI Logo (PRNewsFoto/ALDI) (PRNewsfoto/ALDI)

ALDI is on a roll, too. For the fourth consecutive year, the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) GreenChill program has recognized ALDI for having the most GreenChill Certified Stores of any other food retail company. This year, ALDI once again snagged the EPA’s Store Certification Excellence recognition, continuing its grocery industry leadership in environmentally friendly refrigeration. The EPA also awarded 21 ALDI stores with Store Re-Certification Excellence honors for receiving GreenChill store Certifications for five consecutive years. GreenChill Certification is awarded to stores that replace standard commercial refrigerants with environmentally friendlier refrigerants that keep their greenhouse gas emissions as close to zero as possible.

In the first half of the year, 19 ALDI stores received their first GreenChill Certification, with over 100 more stores planning to apply for their first Certifications by the end of 2022. This could bring the total number of Certified ALDI stores across the country to nearly 610. Among these newly Certified stores was the 500th store to switch over to environmentally friendly refrigerants, located in Mobile, Alabama, which received the Platinum Certification, the highest level available. This milestone is significant because CO2 refrigeration systems require high pressure to operate, which is challenging to achieve in warm, humid climates.

“We share our customers’ passion for protecting the environment, so working to reduce our carbon footprint is a major focus for us. Being recognized as a leader in sustainability by the EPA time and time again makes our work stand out and is something truly special,” said Dan Gavin, vice president of national real estate at ALDI. “We’re working to decrease our overall impact on the climate more and more each day, with each step bringing us that much closer to becoming ‘real zero,’ or completely emissions-free. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for ALDI and our planet.”

ALDI is committed to keeping things cool, naturally

The transition to natural refrigerants has lowered the global warming potential of emissions from ALDI, decreasing the impact ALDI has made on the climate. That’s because a store with regular refrigerated spaces typically leaks about one-quarter of its gases each year, meaning it can emit 875 pounds of harmful hydrofluorocarbons, or industrial chemicals, annually, equivalent to the carbon dioxide produced by around 300 cars.* To receive GreenChill Certification, stores must achieve a store-wide annual HFC refrigerant leak rate of 15% or less, in addition to meeting other Certification criteria. This represents at least a 33% reduction in HFC emissions compared to the average supermarket. 

“ALDI continues to lead the industry in GreenChill Store Certifications, with more currently Certified stores than all other grocery retailers in the nation combined,” said Kersey Manliclic, EPA GreenChill program manager. “It’s an impressive achievement and one that contributes to a cleaner environment for everyone. EPA encourages all food retail companies to pursue GreenChill Store Certification.”

ALDI has BIG sustainability goals, and it’s holding itself accountable

Being sustainable is a priority for ALDI. But not just that: ALDI wants to make sustainability affordable, too. Being green while saving green? That’s a win-win. Earlier this year, ALDI released its first-ever Corporate Responsibility Progress Report, which outlined progress towards its environmental goals.

For example, ALDI is aiming to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 26% by 2025. In addition to evolving its refrigerants, ALDI is taking other big steps toward a smaller carbon footprint, such as:

  • Installing rooftop solar panels that produce green electricity in 120 stores and 12 distribution centers (with plans to add 60 new stores and one new distribution center this year).
  • Using environmentally friendly building materials and energy-efficient appliances in new and remodeled stores.
  • Making green electricity purchases to offset 100% of any energy used that ALDI hasn’t produced itself via its on-site solar and wind.

Reducing carbon emissions is just one way ALDI is becoming an even more sustainable company. It is also working to reduce its use of plastic and increase the recyclability of its packaging. To date, 62% of ALDI-exclusive packaging is reusable, recyclable or compostable. ALDI also plans to eliminate all plastic shopping bags from stores by the end of 2023 and to reduce operational food waste, all while ensuring its products are responsibly sourced and remain affordable. 

“This is just the beginning,” added Gavin. “We plan on remaining at the forefront of sustainability and have some promising ideas on how we can keep reducing our environmental impact even further.”

About ALDI U.S.

ALDI is one of America’s fastest-growing retailers, serving millions of customers across the country each month. With 2,200 stores across 38 states, ALDI is on track to become the third-largest grocery retailer by store count by the end of 2022. When it comes to value, ALDI won’t be beat on price. ALDI has also been No. 1 for price according to the Dunnhumby Retailer Preference Index Report for five years running. Since 1976, ALDI has offered a unique shopping experience where customers never have to compromise on quality, selection or value. In fact, 1 in 3 ALDI-brand products are award-winning.** Customers can save time and money by conveniently shopping in-store or online at shop.aldi.us. ALDI also proudly serves as a Feeding America Leadership Partner, donating 30 million pounds of food each year in an effort to end hunger in America. For more information about ALDI, visit aldi.us.

*According to the Environmental Investigation Agency’s Leaking Havoc supermarket scorecard.

**As of February 2022, based on a survey of everyday, nationally distributed ALDI-exclusive branded products (excluding produce).

About EPA GreenChill Partnership 

EPA’s GreenChill Program is a voluntary partnership with food retailers, system manufacturers and chemical producers to reduce refrigerant emissions and decrease their impact on the ozone layer and climate change. GreenChill provides food retailers and other industry stakeholders with information and assistance to: transition to environmentally friendlier refrigerants, reduce the amount of refrigerant they use, eliminate refrigerant leaks, implement environmental best practices and adopt green refrigeration technologies. There are nearly 13,000 GreenChill Partner stores throughout the nation. For more information on EPA’s GreenChill Program, please visit www.epa.gov/greenchill.

 

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