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Gin Lee

Where does all the unsold grub go?

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Gin Lee
Gin Lee
 27 days ago

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Where does all the unsold produce go?Desygner/Virginia Watkins

Where does all the unsold grub go?

Since food waste is a growing concern with many Arkansans, this article was written specifically about what becomes of the unsold produce, meat, canned and boxed food specifically at the big Wal-Mart Supercenters, Sam's Clubs, and Wal-Mart Marketplaces since Wal-Mart first launched in "The Natural State."

In the year of nineteen sixty-two Wal-marts, first headquarters started up in the county of Benton County, in Rodgers, Arkansas. This was only the beginning for Sam Walton's retail store known as Wal-Mart. It was said to be that Sams's mission was to bring discounted prices to undeveloped rural areas in Arkansas. As the years unfolded, Wal-Mart stores also evolved, expanding into various other states. Within recent years the majority of all Wal-Mart retail centers were expanded into more modern-day supercenters. Such as the well-loved, (open twenty-four hours) Wal-Mart Supercenters, Wal-Mart Marketplace, and Sam's Club.

Since the rise of Wal-Mart's Supercenters, Wal-Mart Marketplaces, and Sam's Clubs becoming a top "one-stop-shop" for its customers, what happens to unsold food?

Sustainability of unsold food at Wal-Mart Supercenters, Sam's Clubs, and Wal-Mart Marketplaces

Still, in today's time, you wouldn't think that there would be so much food waste, however, the majority of most supermarket stores are still tossing food away. Employees of these general grocery stores can still be seen throwing unsold, best before-dated food products out in the dumpster once the night shift ends. Then where it is permitted, dumpster divers go jumping into the trash retrieving the thrown-out goods to carry home for free. However, many of these supermarkets have started putting the dumpsters under lock and key, or put chained locked fences up around the dumpster areas, to keep people out. But the products that aren't and can't be retrieved end up as waste in our local landfills.

Though, much has improved within the past few years with the larger food supply chains such as Wal-Mart. By the year twenty twenty-five Wal-Mart hopes to achieve zero waste and has shifted about 80% of its unsold food, packaging, and other materials from going to landfills globally. Since the year two thousand nineteen Wal-Mart has been donating unsold food products through their food donations program within the United States. These products are distributed to local food banks. Food banks, as well as other agencies, pick up all the food products that can no longer be sold by Wal-Mart to their consumers due to the best-before dates and freshness of the said products. These products are not ruined by any means, but the quality of the products are not at their peak.

Within the United States Wal-Mart has donated millions of pounds of food just within the past few years through their food donations program. This program not only cuts out on the waste that would otherwise have been dumped into landfills but also helps feed the hungry all over the United States and globally.

Unfortunately, in some cases, many tons of perishable foods can not be passed off to food banks and other agencies in due time before products ruin. In these circumstances, the commodities are transported to landfills to reduce the risk of people getting food poisoning.

Through Trading Standards, stores can be fined for selling out-of-date (expired) goods. While there are still several grocery stores in today's time throwing away billions of pounds of food, instead of donating it, Wal-Mart strives to be better, and do things in a different light. Hopefully, more grocery stores will jump aboard the zero waste programs within the upcoming years. After all, if France can ban foods from being thrown out, requiring supermarkets to donate these products to the hungry, then why can't the United States jump on the same ship deck?