SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. - After a successful pilot at approximately 3,000 EDEKA and Netto Marken-Discount stores in Germany resulted in a 50% reduction of food waste, Apeel and EDEKA are partnering to bring Apeel’s solutions to more than 11,000 of the grocery chain’s German stores.
“When we use nature's solutions to solve food waste, everyone benefits: food retailers, shoppers and ultimately, the environment,” said James Rogers, chief executive officer of Apeel. “Apeel’s food waste reduction results at EDEKA suggest that we're entering an age of sustainability where there’s alignment between businesses and doing the right thing for the planet. Solving food waste goes beyond a better bottom line: it's now understood to be the number one way to fight climate change."
The pilot saw positive results with avocados from Chile and Peru that were treated with Apeel. Write-off rates (shrink and food loss), sales and turnover values were tracked over a 12-week period. Figures were compared with those of a control group of non-Apeel treated produce, and the results included the following:
In the produce departments that used Apeel, a total of 50% fewer avocados were wasted.
Apeel helped pilot stores achieve 20% growth in avocado sales, due to both selling more avocados that would have otherwise gone to waste as well as increased customer demand.
Avocados treated with Apeel have proven to be superior in quality thanks to its plant-derived technology that retains moisture while reducing oxidation, which ensures longer-lasting freshness throughout the natural ripening process and longer overall shelf life.
In Germany, some 12 tons of food are disposed of each year. Studies show that more than half of food losses occur in private households. Fruit and vegetables are discarded most of all, accounting for 34%.
Avocados, as well as oranges and clementines, are currently the first Apeel categories to be offered at EDEKA and Netto Marken-Discount stores. The EDEKA Group plans to introduce additional Apeel produce categories in the future in cooperation with its innovative suppliers.
“With the nationwide launch of Apeel in our stores, we are reaching a new milestone in our goal of reducing food waste and the use of plastic packaging step-by-step,” said Markus Mosa, chief executive officer of Hamburg-based EDEKA. “We also support our shoppers to make an active contribution themselves to prevent valuable food in the household from ending up in the garbage bin.”