Wegmans Food Markets expanded its Zero Waste program to five store locations following a successful one-store pilot in Canandaigua, New York.
Wegmans is working with cloud-based waste and recycling solutions provider Rubicon Global to eliminate all forms of waste at its stores.
Accordingly, Wegmans says they use less-than-perfect produce and slightly blemished food in their culinary operations to minimize waste at the source.
Local food pantries and food banks pick up unsaleable perishable food items from Wegmans stores throughout the week, according to the company.
Last year 70 Wegmans stores diverted 32.5 million pounds of food waste from landfills through the company’s programs.
Through partnerships with Rubicon, local food banks and pantries, and local haulers, Wegmans says it tracks all the food coming out of the stores, whether it becomes waste, gets donated, or is becomes livestock feed, compost, or goes to anaerobic digestion.
Wegmans has more than 90 stores in six states and plans to add more stores to the Zero Waste program in the future.