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Ratio Institute Recertifies Hannaford For Operational Sustainability

Ratio Institute Hannaford Supermarkets

Ratio Institute has announced that Hannaford Supermarkets has completed Ratio Institute’s Sustainable Food Retail Certification. The process revealed large emissions reductions and enhanced operational efficiencies for the company, which operates 186 grocery stores in New England and New York. 

A key component of the certification process is sustainability benchmarking at all of a food retailer’s stores. This involves an initial benchmark or assessment of their sustainability performance against a common standard, followed by measuring their progress against the benchmark over time. The aim is to drive the best sustainability practices and align them with corporate initiatives. 

Based on data collected throughout the process, Hannaford’s energy efficiency, water efficiency and cardboard recycling measures have reduced their annual CO2 emissions by about 300,000 metric tons. These reductions are equivalent to removing 65,400 gasoline-powered passenger vehicles from U.S. roads for a year. They are also comparable to taking a 15-megawatt coal power plant out of service in each of the communities in which Hannaford operates. 

In 2014, Hannaford became the first grocery retail chain to enroll in the Grocery Stewardship Certification, the predecessor to the Sustainable Food Retail Certification. Hannaford recertified 2015-17 and 2019. Sustainability benchmarking, tracking and ongoing certification have helped enable the company’s impressive emissions reductions over the last decade. 

During the most recent certification, Ratio Institute identified additional specific workplace practices, sustainability measures and capital improvements to drive further operational efficiencies. 

“Hannaford’s ongoing certification work with Ratio Institute has been instrumental in achieving its sustainability goals and reaffirming its community commitment,” said George Parmenter, health and sustainability brand lead for Hannaford Supermarkets.

“We appreciate Ratio Institute’s specific, itemized recommendations to enhance sustainability, operational performance, and community stewardship. The certification process and Ratio Institute’s expertise enable Hannaford to refine its sustainability strategy and plans over time.”

Peter Cooke, co-founder of Ratio Institute, said, “Hannaford has been improving store operations through sustainable practices since 2014. The company is a sustainability leader in the food retail industry because of its systematic, consistent approach to the Sustainable Food Retail Certification at all of its stores across five states.” 

Hannaford Supermarkets is an industry leader in sustainability. This dates back to the mid-1980s when Hannaford became the first grocery retailer in the nation to introduce reusable bags to its customers. The retailer diverts or donates all food at risk of going to waste, sending no food to landfills.

In 2022, Hannaford donated 25 million pounds of food to hunger relief organizations and prevented 65 million pounds of food waste from reaching landfills. 

Additional information about the retailer’s sustainability initiatives can be found here. 

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