Minimising waste remains a significant challenge for businesses in the Australian retail sector and Kmart Group is committed to playing its part through its ongoing efforts to reduce, re-use and recycle its store and distribution centre waste and consumer packaging.
Waste diversion from stores and distribution centres across Kmart Group improved from 75 per cent last year to 79 per cent in the 2019 financial year, a period challenged by volatile markets for recycled materials. This result was also impacted by changes in data collection methods in Queensland which improve accuracy and contributed to this year’s increase.
In response to our need to improve waste diversion and manage recycling and waste system volatility with growing challenges in Asian markets for Australian and New Zealand waste, Kmart Group has commenced implementation of the Better Together Waste Diversion Program (see Kmart Group Waste Diversion Program case study).
All Kmart and Target stores have now stopped providing single use shopping bags following the implementation of voluntary bans across Australia, with all entry level re-usable bags now containing recycled material. This change has reduced plastic bag use in Western Australia and Queensland by 80 per cent since July 2018.
Kmart Group’s membership of TechCollect has funded the collection and recycling of 134,810 kilograms of complying e-waste items, including televisions, computer and peripheral devices. TechCollect was set up by the Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform as the official government-approved e-waste recycling program.