Walmart is setting its sights on reaching a goal of achieving 100% recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable packaging by 2025 with the debut of Ciruclar Connector, an online tool to bridge the gap between companies searching for more sustainable packaging ideas and those that offer them.
Ashley Hall, director of strategic programs at Walmart, said that the platform aims to help accelerate packaging innovation and its implementation.
[Read more: Walmart continues efforts to ditch plastic bags]
“We want to make it easier for sourcing teams and brand companies to quickly find sustainable packaging solutions, enabling us all to move faster together on reducing waste from our communities, our oceans and our environment,” Hall said. “And as you know, Walmart is all about driving efficiencies. With the Circular Connector, we expect the journey to become easier for brands and innovators to identify and implement more sustainable packaging solutions.”
The Circular Connector is available here for all packaging companies that are interested in submitting sustainable packaging solutions. To participate, innovations should align with Walmart’s sustainable packaging goals. Each submission will be screened against those goals, and if aligned, will be published later this year for public download on walmartsustainabilityhub.com and made available to Walmart private brands associates and suppliers for their consideration.
Walmart’s Recycling Playbook provides examples of materials that are difficult to recycle and could disqualify innovations from inclusion in the Circular Connector. These materials include:
- Metallized films;
- Multilayer materials;
- PVC or PVDC;
- EPS or PS;
- PETG in rigid plastic packaging;
- Undetectable carbon black;
- Colored PET; and
- Biodegradable additives in petroleum-based plastics.
“We don’t have time to waste and we need to work together to drive innovative solutions at scale. Companies with reusable, refillable, recyclable and other sustainable packaging solutions, please share your innovations,” Hall said. “There are hundreds of companies working toward sustainable packaging goals just like Walmart, and Circular Connector is yet another tool in that journey. It demonstrates our commitment to make it easier for our customers to make more sustainable choices, and for companies to choose sustainable packaging while lifting up the innovators and disrupting the status quo with solutions that can help us all toward a cleaner and more sustainable future.”