Since 2017, the Woolworths Group has made significant progress in their commitment to sustainability. Placing focus on moving towards a circular economy, sourcing environmentally sustainable commodities and responding to climate change in all areas of their business.
CEO Brad Banducci and Chairman Gordon Cairns stated in the 2020 Sustainability Report that, “We can no longer be satisfied with simply limiting detrimental impacts. We are actively looking for ways to create positive change and make the world a better place for tomorrow.”
As Australia’s largest retailer, the Woolworths Group is committed to creating a greener future, aiming to power all its operations – including almost 3300 stores globally with renewable energy by 2025.
The company uses 1% of Australia’s electricity consumption.
“We have a unique opportunity to use our scale for good and make a real impact.”
Their 2025 renewable energy goal will be achieved by getting energy sources from wind and solar. Currently 150 Woolworths stores have rooftop solar panels installed, providing 13% of those site’s energy needs.
Sustainability is now an intrinsic part of their business.
“We continue to be committed to providing genuine, transparent reporting on our progress, and this year have increased our disclosure in our most strategically important areas of sustainability,” CEO Banducci explained.
Case Study: Burwood Brickworks
Woolworths opened its most sustainable supermarket in late 2019. During the construction of the store, the group looked at all angles of manufacturing to see how the store could be built and run sustainably.
The store is a culmination of all Woolworths sustainable efforts to date. Some of its redesigned features are;
- 100% powered by renewable energy
- Shopping trolleys are made from recycled materials including; milk bottles and discarded hand baskets
- in -store collection bins for customers to return soft plastics and packaging as part of a circular economy program
The Burwood Brickworks store is also where the Group will continue to trial new and innovative sustainability concepts that are customer focussed.
After hitting several targets in 2020 from 2017 sustainability commitments, the Woolworths Group is about to launch their new sustainable strategies for the upcoming years.