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Sustainable supermarkets

Read an article about how some supermarkets have become more environmentally friendly to practise and improve your reading skills.

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Many of the major supermarket chains have come under fire with accusations of various unethical acts over the past decade. They've wasted tonnes of food, they've underpaid their suppliers and they've contributed to excessive plastic waste in their packaging, which has had its impact on our environment.

But supermarkets and grocers are starting to sit up and take notice. In response to growing consumer backlash against the huge amounts of plastic waste generated by plastic packaging, some of the largest UK supermarkets have signed up to a pact promising to transform packaging and cut plastic wastage. In a pledge to reuse, recycle or compost all plastic wastage by 2025, supermarkets are now beginning to take some responsibility for the part they play in contributing to the damage to our environment, with one major supermarket announcing their plan to eliminate all plastic packaging in their own-brand products by 2023.

In response to criticisms over food waste, some supermarkets are donating some of their food surplus. However, charities estimate that they are only accessing two per cent of supermarkets' total food surplus, so this hardly seems to be solving the problem. Some say that supermarkets are simply not doing enough. Most supermarkets operate under a veil of secrecy when asked for exact figures of food wastage, and without more transparency it is hard to come up with a systematic approach to avoiding waste and to redistributing surplus food.

Some smaller companies are now taking matters into their own hands and offering consumers a greener, more environmentally friendly option. Shops like Berlin's Original Unverpakt and London's Bulk Market are plastic-free shops that have opened in recent years, encouraging customers to use their own containers or compostable bags. Online grocer Farmdrop eliminates the need for large warehouses and the risk of huge food surplus by delivering fresh produce from local farmers to its customers on a daily basis via electric cars, offering farmers the lion's share of the retail price.

There is no doubt that we still have a long way to go in reducing food waste and plastic waste. But perhaps the major supermarkets might take inspiration from these smaller grocers and gradually move towards a more sustainable future for us all.



Language level

Advanced: C1


Some stores in South Korea do not issue the paper print, they replace it as electronic receipts using the smartphone application.

It seems to me that the root of the problem lies mostly in the providers who furnish the products rather than the supermarkets themselves. Likewise, these franchises have to be rigorous with their choices, taking it for granted that just the mere change of the product package would implie necessarily that they have to resort for a redesign, which is ultimately worth an outrageous amount of money that they hazard losing, because after all, regardless the situation, they're still competing in the industry game.
It Is conceivable that, on the other hand, there is indeed ulterior motives at the prospect of monetary benefits. However, the fact of the matter is that the problem is not something that would be settled by sheer happenstance, not while the profits are at stake.

Plastic packaging just sucks honestly. Yeah, it's easy to put it in there in bulk, but it's not eco-friendly at all. Atleast make it bio-degradeble or something like that.

Every time I come fromthe supermarket ,I feel really frustrated cause the lot of plastic which I bring to home. Ther's also to say that there's a whole economic system based upon the plastical materials . We hope that the good examples take new behaviours.

Plasic bags are going to be forbiden in Georgia untill next year. More countries should take the same measures. Also the era of disposables is coming to its end it would be nice to get rid of them from from grosery shelves now.