A former employee, Daniel Schoeler who worked at almost a dozen Walmart stores in the Vancoer area is speaking out about what he calls ‘heart breaking’ food waste at the giant retailer. He told that on every shift in almost every store, he could see tons of what appeared to be perfectly good food dumped into the trash even though the retailer says it only discards waste food. For almost six years, Scholeler worked for a company contracted by Walmart to assemble bikes, furnitures and other products in the back of Walmart stores. He discontinued his service in the last spring.
From the back of his mind, he reels of a list of grocery items he regularly saw tossed in the trash compactor: bags of apples and potatoes, watermelons, tubs of margarine, yogurt and sour cream, cottage cheese, cans of edible food with expiry dates that hadn’t surpassed, butter, cheese and baked goods.
When contacted for a comment on the subject the retailer’s spokesperson Mr Alex Roberton said that he cannot deal with the specifics but Walmart is committed to reduce its food waste. He added that generally there is an assumption that retailers don’t care. But they do care and it costs a lot of money to deal with the waste, so it’s not in the retailers interest to just throw the stuff out. He further added that Walmart has teamed up with many organizations such as food banks to donate unsold food, and it is only discarded when it is deemed inedible.
Spiegelman, former executive director of the Recycling Council of British Columbia commented that ‘this is disappointing’. Walmart damn well should have the wherewithal to fix these problems. There is a considerable amount of laziness. What needed is a culture shift, where food waste and a lack of recycling become sinful. She added that people think garbage doesn’t matter. But it is definitely contributing to weather change. Food wastes contributes to a large part of landfills, which emit methane, the second largest contributor to climate change, following CO2 emissions from burning fossil fuels.