Metro Foods Inc. Using 5 Cent Bag fee to fund Pesticide Free Activists
Friday, April 26, 2013
I would like to express my joy at reading the news on the front page of the April 24 Chronicle-Journal regarding the city’s second annual food summit and the demand for local food not being met (More Farmers Needed). I feel happy and appreciative about the fact that the city is willing to support this trend toward local food and to implement a strategy toward satisfying the growing demand for local food. Not only will this movement toward growing fresh food right here in Thunder Bay increase our health, it also contributes to the health of our environment and makes our communities more resilient.
I would like to add that local is great, but pesticide-free should not be forgotten. What is the point of eating foods that have been sprayed with harmful products? Sure we help the environment and our local farmers by buying food that didn’t have to be transported from afar, but what do we do to our bodies and to the soil in which it grew? The atmosphere, ground water and all waterways suffer from the making and using of pesticides.
So I appeal to all farmers of Thunder Bay: Is it more difficult or more expensive to grow pesticide-free food? Have you done research or have you acted on preconceived ideas and habits? Have you talked to pesticide-free farmers and asked them for information and help? I do not wish to judge, but simply to express a need and a wish for more local, pesticide-free foods.
- May 19, 2009 7:00 AM
Metro launches Green Apple School Program to fund healthier living and environmental initiatives
Grocer to begin charging for shopping bags in Ontario and Quebec MONTREAL, May 19 /CNW Telbec/ - Metro furthered its commitment to the environment today by introducing a multi-faceted program that will help the company reach its broader environmental and sustainability goals. The highlight of the program is the launch of a $2 million Green Apple School Program. The program will officially launch on June 1, 2009, when all Metro stores across Ontario and Quebec (Metro, Metro Plus, Super C and Marché Richelieu) begin collecting a five cent fee for shopping bags. This initiative will help reduce at the source the number of plastic bags currently in circulation and will go a long way to enable Metro to reach its target of a 50 per cent reduction by the end of 2010. "This measure will enable us to reduce the impact of our operations on the environment and promote healthy living habits," said Robert Sawyer, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Metro Inc. "The Green Apple School Program encourages thousands of students to contribute to a solution that will ultimately improve their local communities." GREEN APPLE SCHOOL PROGRAM Metro Inc. is allocating $1 million per province to support the newly-created Green Apple School Program. Developed specifically to encourage schools to actively participate in environmental stewardship, grants offered by the Green Apple School Program are driven by conservation and healthy living proposals submitted by students and teachers. ENVIRONMENTAL INVOLVEMENT Today's announcement builds on a history of leading environmental steps taken by the company including being the first grocer to offer the first reusable bag in 2006. Since its inception, 20 per cent of Metro's customers are using reusable bags. Other initiatives include addressing air pollution by enforcing speed limiters on all delivery trucks since 2006 and launching its in-house awareness program "Leave It Greener" to encourage its employees to be more environmentally conscious at work. Communications to shoppers about the new fee-for-bag process and the Green Apple School Program will be done via in-store signage, weekly flyers and a dedicated website. ABOUT METRO INC. With annual sales of nearly $11 billion and over 65,000 employees, Metro Inc. is a leader in the food and pharmaceutical sectors in Quebec and Ontario, where it operates a network of close to 600 food stores under several banners including Metro, Metro Plus, A&P, Loeb, Super C and Food Basics, as well as over 250 pharmacies under the Brunet, Clini Plus, The Pharmacy and Drug Basics banners. For further information, please visit metro.ca.GREEN APPLE SCHOOL PROGRAM The Green Apple School Program is a specially designed grant program that engages young people in Ontario and Quebec to consider a healthier environment and make healthier living conscious choices - rewarding them for their efforts to make a positive impact. When will this program launch? ------------------------------ - The Green Apple School Program is effective June 1, 2009 - Applications will be accepted starting in September and winning projects could be announced as early as the end of September Who can participate in this program? ------------------------------------ - All elementary and secondary schools from School Boards in Ontario and Quebec. How does the program work? -------------------------- - Applicants will be asked to describe the proposed project and provide Metro with detailed examples on how the venture will contribute to healthier living in their school and community Initiatives can fall under the following categories: - Community Clean up (park, street, beach) - Tree plantings - Energy conservation - Beautification projects - Community gardens - 'Eco friendly' purchasing - Waste reduction - Community education - Transportation How will grants be selected? ---------------------------- - Healthier environmentally-conscious and action-oriented schools in Ontario and Quebec will have the opportunity to access $2 million worth of grants ($1 million per province) ENVIRONMENTAL INVOLVEMENT Metro believes that it has a duty to respect and protect the environment. Below is an outline of Metro's environmental initiatives. - In January 2006, Metro became the first food distributor in Quebec to offer customers reusable bags for only one dollar with Metro stores in Ontario following suit in June 2006. Metro's bag is made from 100% post-consumer recycled materials and is also 100% recyclable at the end of its useful life. - Two years after the launch of its reusable bag, Metro made another significant environmental act by adhering to the Voluntary Code of Good Practice for the Use of Shopping Bags. This code was adopted on April 21, 2008 by the Association des détaillants en alimentation du Québec, the Canadian Council of Grocery Distributors, the Conseil québécois du commerce de détail, Recyc-Québec and Eco Entreprises Québec. It aims to better manage the use of paper and plastic shopping bags. - In 1998, Metro drafted and implemented an environmental policy that stipulates the Corporation take the necessary measures to act in accordance with environmental laws and regulations and continuously improve its environmental record. - Another way that Metro is reducing the amount of plastic being sent to landfills is by offering a return-to-retail plastic bag recycling program in its Ontario stores. Customers are encouraged to return any plastic shopping bag to Metro for environmentally- friendly recycling regardless of whether the bag came from a Metro store or not. This program will shortly be in place as well in Quebec. - In the last two years, Metro has diverted over 1000 metric tonnes of plastic film from landfill as a result of its programs and efforts by customers and staff. - On Earth Day in 2008, the "Leave It Greener" program was expanded to the entire company and to our network of supermarkets in order to promote environmentally responsible behaviour to consumers. Our initiatives included using "Did you know...?" shelf cards in stores to showcase products that are more environmentally friendly. - In April 2009, Metro continued its environmental efforts by holding its first "Leave It Greener" week across all its offices and buildings. Presentations were made by experts to educate employees about waste reduction in the workplace and climate change, a contest was held to promote environmentally friendly habits at work, and "green" information is now posted on the company's intranet and in its internal newsletters. - Since September 2007, Metro has been involved in the Environmental Sustainability Initiative (ESI). Spearheaded by the food distribution industry, the initiative's specific objective is to account for the greenhouse emissions (in carbon dioxide equivalent) of retail sales activities. This is an important step toward collectively reducing the industry's carbon footprint. - In 2008, Metro's cardboard recycling program collected close to 60,000 metric tonnes. In the same year, close to 1,000 tons of plastic wrap and 6,500 tons of organic materials were recovered. - In addition to major programs such as the reusable shopping bags or the 3Rs, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Metro has launched a number of smaller initiatives which reinforce the company's green philosophy. - Weekly flyers are printed with vegetable inks and are on paper made from wood residue and recycled fibres - Program to reduce lighting 24/7 in Ontario during the summer season. This initiative led to a total energy saving of more than 10 million kWh for all sites involved - Donations of over $12 million to Eco Entreprise Québec and Stewardship Ontario since 2004 to finance municipal recycling programs. All brand owners and first importers who sell consumer products in Quebec and Ontario must finance 50% of the programs - Partnership with the Trees Ontario program in 2008. A cutout of a tree on recycled paper was sold for $2, which raised $132,987 for the organization. Also, at Food Basics stores, 25cents was given to Trees Ontario for each reusable bag sold. This initiative raised $74,910
For further information: Marie-Claude Bacon, Director, Corporate Affaires Department, Metro Inc., (514) 643-1086, firstname.lastname@example.org; Marilyne Lévesque, Senior Account Executive, Optimum Public Relations, (514) 985-8204, email@example.com