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Heritage Grocers Group Showcases Sustainability Efforts

Heritage Grocers Group sustainability

This Earth Week, Heritage Grocers Group is showcasing its efforts to create lasting and positive sustainability impacts that benefit customers, team members and communities where the Hispanic grocer continues to grow and operate. 

Prabash Coswatte headshot
Prabash Coswatte

As a company, Heritage prioritizes its people and the planet. By combining employee empowerment with data-driven sustainability initiatives, its leadership team is working to create a positive impact for generations to come.

“At Heritage, environmental consciousness is at the core of everything we do. This benefits both our team members and customers,” said Prabash Coswatte, chief operating officer. “By reducing food waste, improving inventory productivity, minimizing landfill contributions and promoting energy efficiency, we positively impact our surroundings.

“As grocers, clear sustainability targets empower team members to make a difference, whether it’s reducing water usage, conserving energy or minimizing waste.”

Building sustainable future

Heritage’s commitment to operational excellence extends beyond the bottom line. Sustainability is a core value that shapes everything the company does. 

Here are a few examples of how its environmental stewardship shines:

  • Data-driven sustainability: Heritage has implemented standardized data systems, enhancing transparency and accountability. Its innovative carbon accounting platform tracks carbon emissions, enabling targeted reduction strategies.
  • Optimizing refrigeration: To optimize maintenance and minimize leaks, it has introduced a new refrigeration tagging system. Real-time monitoring ensures efficient energy use and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Smart transportation: By geo-tagging its fleet, Heritage has gained insights into routes, fuel consumption and emissions, informing decisions on optimization and alternative fuels.
  • Energy efficiency upgrades: More than 30 percent of its stores have undergone significant upgrades, from energy-efficient lighting to modern HVAC systems.
  • Food waste reduction: Its commitment extends beyond operations – it collaborates with local food banks, shelters and community organizations, diverting 1.5 million pounds of organic food waste from landfills.

“At Heritage Grocers Group, sustainability isn’t just a priority, it’s woven into the fabric of our identity. Our commitment to reducing emissions is not only about the present – it’s an investment in the health of future generations,” said Veronica Jimenez, VP of construction.

Measurable results, brighter future

Heritage’s rapid expansion, fueled by organic growth and strategic acquisitions, necessitated swift scaling of governance for sustainability matters, robust data management and seamless integration of sustainability efforts across all business functions. 

In the past year, Heritage has achieved a 13 percent reduction in Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions. 

It has executed a renewable energy agreement for the recently acquired El Rancho stores in Texas. This strategic step will further reduce Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by nearly an additional 10 percent. 

Heritage stands at the forefront of specialty grocery retail, with 115 stores across four distinct banners: Cardenas Markets, El Rancho Supermercado, Tony’s Fresh Market and Los Altos Ranch Market. 

Collectively, Heritage Grocers Group offers a unique value proposition – delivering high-quality food at affordable price points while celebrating Hispanic and ethnic offerings steeped in diverse cultural traditions. 

Guided by its commitment to creating lasting and positive impacts that benefit its stakeholders, Coswatte said Heritage remains steadfast in executing strategic and tactical initiatives to create a greener, more responsible future.

Read more sustainability news from The Shelby Report.

About the author

Carol Radice

Senior Content Creator

Carol joins The Shelby Report with more than 25 years writing for B2B magazines that cover the drugstore and supermarket industries. A Rutgers graduate, she earned her B.A. degree in journalism and mass communications more years ago than she cares to admit. She is thrilled to be working with such an accomplished team and to share her knowledge of the industry with Shelby’s readers.

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