Wal-Mart to buy more locally grown produce

New focus on sustainable agriculture among suppliers

The giant retail chain Wal-Mart anounced a new plan to focus on sustainable agriculture in an effort to improve environmental efficiency among suppliers, putting more locally grown food in its US stores, the New York Times reports. The program will also invest in training and infrastructure for small and medium-size farmers, especially in emerging markets, and measure the efficiency of large suppliers as they grow their produce and get it to store shelves. The world’s largest grocer, Wal-Mart also has one of the biggest supply chains so its changes will have a large effect. Five years ago, when the company set a goal to increase reliance on renewable energy and reduce packaging waste, others quickly followed suit. Wal-Mart expects to meet its goals by late 2015, hoping to double the percentage of locally grown produce (defined here as what’s grown and sold in the same state) to 9 per cent. In Canada, the company expects to buy 30 per cent of produce locally by late 203, and by the end of 2013, when available, 100 per cent.

New York Times