Canada\'s major grocery chains slow to tackle the mounting problem of plastic waste
When you throw the plastic packaging of the food into the blue trash can, you may not want it to be dumped or burned all over the world. But this is what could happen. The exclusive images provided by Greenpeace show that in the industrial zone south of Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital, a large amount of plastic packaging is dumped next to palm plantations, close to the waterways and burned on the roadside. Malaysia imports plastic waste from around the world, including Canada. Most of them are recycled, but some materials may be discarded because of poor quality, pollution or degradation because they are improperly stored in tropical climates. This includes plastic debris from grocery stores in Canada, including a bag from Sobeys, a milk bag from scotomen from Nova Scotia dairy and a burger bread bag from the bakery. While Loblaws and Sobeys are sources of large quantities of plastic packaging, the two largest companies in Canada Supermarket chain without target Or at least no one is willing to share with the market. Reduce the amount of plastic they sell in the store. \"Things need to change,\" said Silwan charibois, an expert in food distribution and policy at Halifax Dalhousie University. He says single- The use of plastics, such as those used for food packaging, is becoming increasingly controversial, \"companies need to comply with public expectations of them. \"As the market has found, the process is going further in the United States. K. Compared to Canada. Retailers there have begun to take significant steps to remove plastic from their stores. \"We took action \". K. - A supermarket chain specializing in frozen products is the first supermarket in the world to promise to remove all plastic from its own products within five years. Morrison, another big supermarket chain in Britain, banned singles. Using plastic bags, customers can carry reusable meat and fish containers. The company has also tried fruit and vegetable packaging in some stores. A branch of the Budgens chain in Camden, London-Thornton\'s Budgens go further and become one of the world\'s first supermarkets to introduce complete plastics -- Free area throughout the store. Within 10 weeks, the store canceled plastic packaging for nearly 2,000 products such as fruits, vegetables, bacon, fish, baked goods, cheese and takeout food. \"We are destroying the planet and for me plastic has become one of the problems of today\'s society,\" said owner Andrew Thornton . \". \"We took action because we could, we felt we could make a difference. \"Your lifestyle is to have the blue box recycle unsustainable fruit and vegetables packed in compostable beechwood net made from sawmill waste or not at all. Baked goods are sold or packed on paper as they are, and cheese, fish and some meat are packed with wax paper or compostable cellulose. \"Our customers love it,\" Thornton said, planning to make the whole store \"almost plastic -- Free for three years. Watch: British Plastic activist Frankie Gillard is shocked at how much plastic groceries Canada uses to pack. But he said he needed to take those steps further. Operations of major suppliers such as Nestle, Unilever and Coca-Cola Find alternative packaging for their products. Frankie Gillard of the environmental group Plastic Planet, who oversees the project in thornton\'s budgens, said large supermarkets have the ability to turn major brands to more sustainable packaging methods. \"You basically said, \'We want Otherwise, list your products, \"she said. \"They have the ability to build or break a brand. So, of course, they have the ability to say how to pack. \"If public opinion helps push the food giant in that direction, then a lot of plastic waste in Malaysia could add to the sense of urgency. Until recently, recycling in many developed countries meant shipping plastics to China, where plastics were purchased as a commodity and processed cheaply for new consumer products. 6 ways to take out- No waste, chemicals and bees: Why are Canadian farmers opposed to the proposed pesticides that Western countries are used to instead of re-using Handle all their materials at home. According to a study by the University of Georgia, nearly half of the world\'s plastic waste has been sent to China since 1991. But it all changed in January 2018, when China closed the door to most of the garbage in order to reduce pollution in China. Research from the University of Georgia estimates that by 2030 this move will result in 0. 111 billion tons of global plastic waste nowhere to go. The market contacted urban waste managers in cities across Canada to understand the impact of this change on the year. While challenges vary across the country, many cities still face major headaches. \"This is a buyer\'s market. \"We don\'t sell materials anymore, we pay people to take them,\" said Matt Keliher, solid waste manager in Halifax . \". The business of finding the market for plastic waste in Canada has become \"super- \"The competition is fierce,\" he said. Keliher will not reveal the destination of the plastic collected in the Halifax blue bin project, for fear that the city will be weakened by other cities. Sharon Howland, head of project management in Calgary, said the city had shipped half of its recyclable items to China in the past. Calgary still hasn\'t found a destination for some materials, including plastic shells used to wrap things like cherry tomatoes, salads, and berries. \"We store the materials in a trailer at one of our facilities,\" she said . \". China\'s decision has less negative impact on Toronto and Montreal. Garbage officials in these cities told the market that they worked with recyclers in Ontario and Quebec. However, the two cities are still struggling to find the market known as film plastic, which is used in shopping bags, bread bags and dry cleaners. \"There is a problem with the film, because all the films went to China before,\" said Nadine Kerr, processing and resource management manager in downtown Toronto. It\'s this type of plastic. Including some apparently shipped from Canada. Garbage found by Greenpeace in Malaysia Statistics provided by the Malaysian government to Greenpeace show that since China introduced new restrictions, global plastic exports to the country have increased dramatically. In the first six months of 2018, Canada shipped 16,000 tons of plastic to Malaysia. Reuben Mooney, project manager for Greenpeace Malaysia, said the country\'s recycling industry was \"overwhelmed by large amounts of imported plastic waste \". \"The global recycling system has been broken, and it needs to work together to fix it,\" he said. The operation of rich countries producing large quantities of waste and countries importing waste. Since the mass production of plastics began in the 1950 s, eight plastics have been produced in the world. There are 3 billion tons. Only plastic is recycled in Canada, and globally, that number has dropped to nine. How does \"green\" plastic packaging become a problem How to fix it Nestlé, Tim Hortons says Canada\'s biggest plastic-contaminated plastic is found in the deepest trenches, air and food in the Arctic, the ocean. It is estimated that by 2050, there will be more plastic per ton in the world\'s oceans than fish. Different from aluminum, glass and other materials, plastic can only be re-processed The number of processing is limited. This means that even the plastic we manage to recycle will eventually become waste. Once discarded, it will take hundreds of years to break down. A study by the University of California at Santa Barbara estimated that 40 of the plastic was used for packaging. But when there are very few alternatives offered by retailers, it is difficult to reduce our usage as consumers. The shelves of Canadian grocery giants Loblaws and Sobeys are full of plastic Packaged products Fruits, vegetables, eggs, baked goods and even coconuts are packed in plastic. Meat and fish are hard to buyto- Recycled foam tray ready Take-out food is sold in black plastic pallets and is not accepted for recycling in most parts of Canada. Customers at Loblaws and Sobeys revealed how much plastic packaging they had in their groceries. These two stores also provide customers The use of plastic shopping bags, although Loblaws said that the number of shopping bags it offers each year has dropped by one billion since the launch of a small fee in 2009. The market contacted Loblaws and Sobeys to understand their goal of reducing plastic packaging in stores. In a statement, Loblaws did not disclose any specific targets, but the company said it recognized that \"plastic packaging is an area that needs considerable attention \", \"Gradual measures\" will be taken to solve the problem. The grocery giant says it has reduced total packaging by four. 9 million kilograms since 2009, but no specific figures for plastic have been provided. Sobeys did not respond to repeated requests to share any steps for the chain to cut plastic. It was a huge change for Thornton in London, and he wanted the big shops to be inspired and follow in his footsteps. \"If we . . . . . . This can be done in 10 weeks, and what would they do if Loblaws, Tesco or Wal-Mart put all the resources in? \" he said. \"This is the time for great changes.