Ahold Delhaize USA, SEE and ExxonMobil have announced their collaboration on an advanced recycling initiative. The project recycles flexible plastics from the food supply chain and remakes them into new, certified circular food-grade packaging. The initiative is expected to begin this summer and scale over time.
“We’re proud to work with SEE and ExxonMobil on this collaboration, which has the potential to radically change the way retailers and manufacturers leverage food-grade recycled plastics as a key means of keeping plastics out of landfills,” said Brittni Furrow, VP of health and sustainability for Ahold Delhaize USA. “We’re eager to learn from this work and apply the learnings to advance our own plastics ambitions but also advance these efforts broadly, helping to ensure a better tomorrow for our planet.”
A critical challenge facing the food industry is driving a circular economy for plastics using packaging materials that have strict hygiene and performance requirements for food protection and distribution. Recovering these packaging materials requires recycling solutions beyond traditional mechanical recycling.
The collaboration between SEE, ExxonMobil and Ahold Delhaize USA will help increase the use of recycled content by validating the technical and economic viability of a certified circular system based on recycling technology and mass balance attribution. Flexible plastics will be designed to be collected, recycled and repurposed into new food packaging.
The project will help keep used flexible plastics out of landfills, increase the number of times essential plastics can be recycled and ensure the safety and quality of packaged foods.
“SEE is leading the packaging industry by showing how high-performance packaging materials can be designed to be remade. Advanced recycling is key to these valuable materials being collected and remanufactured,” said Ted Doheny, SEE president and CEO. “Our collaboration with ExxonMobil is opening new recycling possibilities and by partnering with leading retail group Ahold Delhaize USA, we are paving the way for our industry to protect perishable foods while creating a low-carbon, circular economy.”
Ahold Delhaize USA, a division of Netherlands-based Ahold Delhaize, is the parent company for Ahold Delhaize’s U.S. companies, including its local brands, Food Lion, Giant Food, The Giant Company, Hannaford and Stop & Shop, Retail Business Services, Peapod Digital Labs and ADUSA Supply Chain companies.
When considered together, the local brands of Ahold Delhaize USA comprise the largest grocery retail group on the East Coast and the fourth largest grocery retail group in the nation, operating more than 2,000 stores and distribution centers across more than 20 states and serving millions of customers each week through their channel of choice.
For more information, visit aholddelhaize.com.