We believe it is our responsibility to help create a healthier, better planet by growing organically near our stores, eliminating waste, and reducing our carbon footprint.
To protect our planet, we will focus on four major initiatives that we believe will have the most positive impact on the environment: sourcing near our stores, eliminating waste, reducing plastic packaging, and reducing our carbon footprint. Our Organic Farm will play a key role in each initiative by helping others with sustainable growing and composting practices.
We operate our Organic Farm & Orchard in Canandaigua, NY with a mission to sustainably source more organic produce and extend the East Coast growing season. Using the farm’s research and development, we’re able to share what we’ve learned with our partner growers to help them become more sustainable as well.
The Organic Farm is the center of sustainability for Wegmans, and in 2022 the farm is committed to achieving 95% zero waste, eliminating three non-recyclable products, and demonstrating an electric delivery truck.
9,000 lbs. of root material is composted at our Organic Farm every week
Knowing where your food comes from is important, and that’s why we believe in partnering with farms and suppliers who share our family values to provide the best-tasting food that is sustainably sourced on the East Coast. With our trusted network of over 400 family farms, we’re able to offer the freshest, best-quality ingredients from close to home.
580,500 food miles reduced by sourcing from East Coast organic farm partners in 2021
* Based on 2021 results.
Through our zero-waste initiative, we are striving to eliminate all forms of waste. Started as a one-store pilot in 2016, the program has expanded to all 106 of our stores, increasing our average store recycling rate, or the amount of material we divert from landfills, from 62% in 2016 to 76.7% in 2021. We’ve committed to reaching a 95% recycling rate by 2025 with a focus on waste prevention measures, reducing food waste, and closed-loop recycling.
Following the EPA’s Food Recovery Hierarchy, we start by minimizing food waste at the source, then donating unsaleable food to local food banks. Through innovative partnerships with farmers, composter, haulers, and recyclers, we’re keeping unavoidable food waste out of landfills by offering it as feed for local livestock or sending it for composting or anaerobic digestion.
95 million lbs. of food waste was kept out of landfills in 2021 through our Zero Waste initiative
To improve the sustainability of our packaging, we’re focused on using less plastic, making sure our packaging is functional to reduce food waste, and using renewable and recycled materials efficiently. We’ve committed to reducing our in-store plastic packaging made from fossil fuels, along with other single-use plastics, by 10 million pounds by 2024. In 2021, we replaced our polystyrene foam egg cartons with ones made from 100% post-consumer recycled newsprint and paper products, eliminating 625,000 pounds of foam from our stores every year.
945,000 lbs. of foam plastic eliminated in 2021 by replacing our egg cartons and seafood packaging with reusable/recyclable alternatives
Reducing our carbon footprint is just one important part of improving our overall sustainability. Our efforts include the increased use of natural refrigerants at our stores and facilities, and reducing our use of non-renewable energy sources in our fleet. We are committed to an annual reduction of 1.25 million gallons of diesel by focusing on alternative fuels, electrification, and reducing our food miles through continued partnerships with East Coast organic farms.
90,000 gallons of diesel fuel saved in 2021 by sourcing from East Coast organic farm partners