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Walmart & Sodexo Joined Pacific Coast Food Waste Commitment to Reduce Regional Food Waste by Half

The collaboration builds on both companies' long-standing efforts to reduce food loss and waste throughout their operations, while also informing and inspiring their business peers through the sharing of data and best practices.

Shivam Dwivedi
Food Wastage
Food Wastage

The Pacific Coast Food Waste Commitment (PCFWC) announced that Sodexo US & Walmart US have publicly committed to supporting and working toward PCFWC's goal of reducing and preventing food waste by 50 percent along the West Coast of the United States by 2030 as a climate change solution.

The collaboration builds on both companies' long-standing efforts to reduce food loss and waste throughout their operations, while also informing and inspiring their business peers through the sharing of data and best practices.

Problem of Food Waste:

Food waste accounts for approximately 4% of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, which is the same amount generated by 21% of cars on the road. The PCFWC is one of the largest public-private partnerships dedicated to reducing food waste on the West Coast, bringing together food businesses and local jurisdictions to reduce food waste in accordance with national and international sustainability targets.

The participation of these two industry leaders will significantly benefit the effort, both in terms of their efforts to reduce waste within their own operations and their influence on suppliers and other partners up and down the value chain.

Importantly, it will serve as a model for collaboration for other businesses considering committing to the PCFWC, as well as send a strong signal to the industry that partnering with other businesses in a pre-competitive format is an important way to target, measure, and act to reduce food waste.

"Sodexo is committed to reducing food waste by half by 2025," said Husein Kitabwalla, CEO of Sodexo North America Food Transformation and Service Operations. "Whether through waste monitoring and tracking, a focus on foods that fight climate change rather than adding to it, or strategic partnerships, such as with the PCFWC, Sodexo is constantly looking to leverage small steps every day that have a big impact."

"We are pleased to assist the PCFWC in its efforts to reduce food waste." “For many years, Walmart has prioritized waste reduction. We have sold 862 million food units through food discount programmes since 2019. During CY2020, we donated over 745 million pounds of food worldwide. Better data can identify scalable ways for us to accelerate these efforts even further, and retailers like Walmart must join efforts like the PCFWC to address these systemic issues," said Jane Ewing, SVP, Sustainability at Walmart.

"Food waste is a systemwide problem that requires a systemwide commitment to solve," explained Pete Pearson, Senior Director of Food Loss and Waste at World Wildlife Fund (WWF), a PCFWC resource partner. "The involvement of industry leaders such as Walmart and Sodexo in the PCFWC demonstrates that waste reduction is no longer a competitive issue." Their presence will show others that when businesses collaborate to measure, share data, and reduce waste, overall progress is much faster."

Walmart's data on food loss and waste throughout their operations in the region (which will be anonymized and aggregated with data from the PCFWC's other retail signatories) will help provide a more precise estimate of waste across the entire retail sector and allow for more accurate identification of key waste "hot spots" to target.

Sodexo's participation as the first foodservice company to join the PCFWC significantly expands the PCFWC's efforts through its work with hospitals, campuses, and other institutional buildings. It also contributes to the company's ongoing efforts to reduce food waste in its own operations. Sodexo's current initiatives include tracking waste data in its kitchens and from customers, training and engaging team members in innovative ways to drive food waste prevention, and donating its daily surplus to local non-profits for distribution to those in need.

Benefits for Signatories to PCFWC

The PCFWC offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity for businesses and jurisdictions to collaborate to reduce food waste in the Pacific Coast region. Signatories to the PCFWC are eligible for a variety of benefits, including:

1. Return on Investment: 

Food waste reduction programmes all over the world have demonstrated a significant return on investment for all types of food businesses.

2. Data Insights:

Aggregated anonymous reporting from all PCFWC signatories enables businesses to track their progress, identify priority areas for action, and compare themselves to competitors. and

Pre-competitive Working Groups open to all PCFWC signatories provide opportunities for businesses to learn from each other's successes, discuss solutions to challenges, and engage with government representatives through special policy roundtable discussions.

In 2019, the Pacific Coast Collaborative – a coalition comprised of the U.S. states of Washington, Oregon, and California; British Columbia, Canada; and the cities of Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles, and Vancouver, British Columbia; as well as nonprofit resource partners ReFED, WWF, and WRAP – invited food businesses and their supply chain partners to join the PCFWC, one of the world's largest public-private partnerships.

Albertsons Companies West Coast division, which includes Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, and Pavilions stores; The Kroger Co.; PCC Community Markets; New Seasons Market; Raley's, and Sprouts Farmers Markets were among the first signatories. Food Northwest, a manufacturing industry association, and Bob's Red Mill joined the effort in 2021, emphasising the importance of reducing waste throughout the supply chain.

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