Starbucks looks to overcome recycling barriers
Seattle Starbucks Coffee Co. is asking U.S. mayors and other municipal leaders to improve local commercial and residential recycling systems. Currently, recycling capabilities vary considerably from city to city and county to county, which presents a significant barrier for a business with more than 11,000 retail locations across the country, the chain said.
Starbucks said it is working with municipal governments, raw-materials suppliers, cup manufacturers, retail and beverage partners, recyclers, environmental NGOs and experts from the academic sector to develop a comprehensive recyclable cup solution by 2012.
“Scalability is critical,” said Jim Hanna, Starbucks director of environmental impact. “We can only achieve it if we take a holistic approach and join forces with our entire value chain. Mayors are uniquely positioned to mobilize stakeholders at a grassroots level and help drive solutions that will make our cups and other packaging more broadly recyclable in form and in practice.”
Currently, approximately 70% of Starbucks North American stores that control their own waste removal are recycling one or more items; however these are typically items behind the counter that are widely accepted for recycling, such as cardboard. Starbucks and other organizations now believe cardboard may be one path to scalability.
The company is participating in a pilot sponsored by Global Green USA’s Coalition for Resource Recovery to test the recyclability of Starbucks paper cups with old corrugated cardboard, the most extensively recycled material in the United States.
In addition to participating in and initiating recycling tests, Starbucks is aligning its operations with municipalities that are launching progressive recycling programs, such as San Francisco, where the company implemented front-of-store recycling and composting in November 2009.
Whole Foods customers give $1M toward Haitian relief
AUSTIN, Texas Whole Foods Market announced that its customers at 289 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom have donated $1 million to several relief efforts in Haiti since Jan. 14.
“Whole Foods Market has seen first-hand the big hearts of its customers during difficult times like these and we are so amazed at their generosity,” said A.C Gallo, co-president and chief operating officer of Whole Foods Market. “We have made it easy for customers to give what they can at our registers to help deliver critical aid to the people of Haiti.”
Donation drives at the company’s checkout counters will continue at all stores until Jan. 31 and directly support a variety of non-profit relief organizations, Whole Foods reported.
Additionally, through its Whole Planet Foundation. Whole Foods Market is doubling its original commitment to now provide $1 million to its on-the-ground microlending partner in Haiti, Fonkoze. As one of Haiti’s leading microfinance institutions, Fonkoze offers microcredit along with a full range of financial services to the poor and underserved throughout the country. The additional funding from Whole Foods Market will assist Fonkoze in rebuilding critical infrastructure lost in the earthquake as they attempt to resume operations. The Whole Planet Foundation is Whole Foods Market’s nonprofit organization that helps developing countries through microfinance.
Sears promotes TVs with Favre
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. Sears has announced a new round of commercials featuring football star Brett Favre.
The new spots will begin airing on Jan. 24 and will be used to promote the retailer’s Samsung offerings.
“We are spreading Favre Fever to fans everywhere by extending great savings to our customers so they can enjoy watching the playoffs on a new TV and feel confident with their purchasing decision,” said Karen Austin, SVP and president of home electronics for Sears Holdings. “With the combination of our affordable prices, quality products and real-time price checks, we know our customers will not waffle on their decision to buy a new TV so they can enjoy every play of the game to the fullest.”
Sears also announced that from Jan. 22 through Jan. 23, it is offering an 8% instant savings on existing low prices for all TVs 46 inches or larger, anyway they pay. The Sears Blue Electronics Crew will extend the deal through Jan. 30 to Sears cardholders only for total electronics purchases more than $999.