Target, Walmart, CVS Tackle Retail Bag Waste

The retailers are looking into identifying and piloting alternatives to the single-use plastic bag.

July 24, 2020

MINNEAPOLIS—A group of retailers wants to find an alternative to single-use plastic bags, Chain Store Age reports. The Center for the Circular Economy at Closed Loop Partners, founded by Target, Walmart and CVS Health, wants to identify, test and implement alternatives to plastic bags used at retail.

Currently, no alternatives have received widespread industry support or usage. To boost innovation, Closed Loop Partners, along with Walgreens and Kroger, have formed the Consortium to Reinvent the Retail Bag. These retailers have committed more than $15 million to the Beyond the Bag Initiative.

“We believe in serving our guests and communities with actions that reduce our footprint on the planet,” said Amanda Nusz, vice president of corporate responsibility for Target. “We’re proud to partner with Closed Loop Partners and other leading retailers to take on a challenge facing the entire industry.”

The consortium is asking for design solutions with an initial focus on using the designs in the United States. On August 3, the Innovation Challenge will open in partnership with IDEO design for anyone to submit sustainable bag solutions. Also, Closed Loop Partners will debut a Circular Accelerator to support potential test opportunities.

“By coming together to tackle the problem, we aim to accelerate the pace of innovation and the commercialization of sustainable solutions,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, executive vice president and chief sustainability officer for Walmart. “Through efforts like the Innovation Challenge and the Circular Accelerator, we hope the Beyond the Bag Initiative will surface affordable, practical solutions that meet the needs of customers and reduce plastic waste.”