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Trader Joe’s is taking the fight against plastic to its 500 or so stores. Trader Joe’s, a haven for hipsters, walks a strange line with its shopper appeal because almost everything there, especially in produce, is packaged. Not all produce is easy to convert over to loose bins. Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. Similarly, the greeting cards are going to be sold in sleeves made with renewable, compostable materials starting August. Their produce bags are now made of a biodegradable, compostable material. All Rights Reserved, This is a BETA experience. You may opt-out by. Much of this progress is being tracked and made available to the public on their website and through their podcast, EY & Citi On The Importance Of Resilience And Innovation, Impact 50: Investors Seeking Profit — And Pushing For Change, Michigan Economic Development Corporation With Forbes Insights. The majority of tea bags are still made from paper, but a study suggests plastic tea bags might be a harmful trend. Trader Joe’s responded: “The outcome of our test was not tolerable from a food-waste perspective, so we are in pursuit of alternatives. The name has changed from ‘Trader Joe’s Irish Breakfast Tea’ to ‘Trader Joe’s Original Irish Breakfast.’ The tea bags are now round instead of square and vacuum packed into two 40-bag columns. A change.org petition received over 80,000 signatures in two months. By: Cox Media Group National Content Desk As part of its efforts to limit plastic waste, grocery store Trader Joe’s is reducing plastic packaging for its products, Cooking Light reported. Dive Brief: Trader Joe’s has pledged several sustainable packaging initiatives following pressure from consumers and environmental groups. This is an absurd waste of plastic, so yes; I’d totally be down for telling Trader Joe’s to cut the plastic habit. Supermarkets throughout Australia and the United Kingdom have stopped providing single-use plastic bags, multinational giants like Ikea have vowed to reduce plastic, and various small-scale stores are experimenting with no-plastic formats. Trader Joe’s has already made some changes. Tomatoes ensconced in crinkly plastic bags. Back in 2018, Trader Joe’s officially stopped offering single-use plastic bags in favor of brown paper bags (which can be recycled or composted). The goal is to look at sustainability across the board at Trader Joe’s, not just in the produce section--though that’s often been the focus of scrutiny from the public. “We regularly shop at Trader Joe’s and don’t understand why the pomegranate white tea (branded Trader Joe’s) individually wraps each tea bag in plastic inside the box?!! But This Alexandria Baker Wasn’t About To Let Her Employees Down. They also answer questions head-on from customers. Grocery store chain Trader Joe's ... compostable packaging initiatives, as well as the discontinuation of plastic wrap for certain single-use products like tea bags. - Eliminating non-recyclable plastic and foil pouches from our tea packages. Write down your name and phone number, and you’ll be entered into a weekly raffle, the winner of which will win a $25 Trader Joe’s … Cucumbers, berries, more fragile vegetables need packaging to keep them fresh, avoid waste, and be practical to carry. This cost $2.29 at the time of publication for a 3.84-oz. Trader Joe’s responded: “, The outcome of our test was not tolerable from a food-waste perspective, so we are in pursuit of alternatives. That’s led them to explore some pretty basic alternatives. It consists of 100% black tea. They did listen to the 91,000 customers who signed a petition last year to get rid of the excess packaging. The Pandemic Took Sales To Zero. The addition of oil from organic Italian Bergamot oranges lends a citrusy, heady aroma (think of Bergamot as the Meyer lemon’s warm, spicy cousin) and brightens the flavor of its black tea counterparts. And tea packages will get new packaging this November made out of more renewable materials. As part of its efforts to limit plastic waste, grocery store Trader Joe’s is reducing plastic packaging for its products, Cooking Light reported. But Trader Joe’s, it seemed, had taken it to a whole new, horrifying level: Persian cucumbers entombed in hard plastic shells. We think this is a great move for Trader Joe’s (and, you know, for our environment.) Trader Joe’s, the cult-like grocery store chain, announced earlier this year that they’re taking a serious look at their plastic consumption. The trial resulted in more food waste: getting rid of the plastic wrap cut down their shelf life to a few days as opposed to up to two weeks. The new package is smaller and not nearly as green. Monrovia, California-based grocery chain Trader Joe’s is taking several measures to decrease its reliance on single-use plastics, according to an announcement on its website. In our experience, it tastes pretty much like any other English breakfast tea we’ve had, including Twinings. Thus, the company is open to selling more loose produce, if it cuts down on waste and makes sense from a business perspective, which can be a fine line for grocery stores that are famous for operating on thin margins. So check it out and keep these non-recyclable materials in mind to avoid next time you’re at Trader Joe’s: Mesh produce bags, styrofoam, premade salad bags, plastic films, and milk/soup cartons (dependent on region). Why sip out of a plain old coffee mug when you can choose from one of these 11 punny options?! They replaced plastic produce bags with biodegradable and compostable produce bags for carrying loose fruits and vegetables. Follow me on Twitter @esh2440 or on Instagram at @eshatravels. Here’s an update: they’re making progress. Although TJ's new sustainability efforts have gained widespread attention among customers over the last month, the grocery chain officially announced its plastic-reduction plans on the last day of 2018. How The Global Pandemic Became An Inflection Point For Drones, The Voices Of Entrepreneurs, From Arkansas To Appalachia To Montana, Learn Public Health Skills To Keep Your Business Healthy, Entrepreneurial Lessons From The Twitter Saga, How Startups Are Changing And Adapting To The Pandemic Era, Microsoft Races Ahead On RPA (Robotic Process Automation), Snowflake: Valuable Lessons For Entrepreneurs. To that end, Trader Joe’s stopped offering single-use plastic carryout bags in all their stores across the country. The trial resulted in more food waste: getting rid of the plastic wrap cut down their shelf life to a few days as opposed to up to two weeks. While we may not always arrive at the right solution the first time, we remain steadfast in our dedication to this important work.”. I write about the growing "industry" of social innovation. By: Cox Media Group National Content Desk . RJ … Apparently now the bags are individually wrapped in plastic, which seems like a step backward in sustainability. Trader Joe's tea bags now wrapped in plastic I just picked up a couple boxes of Trader Joe's Herbal Tea (peppermint) at the store the other day. I cover a new taxonomy that looks at the crossroads of business and impact, particularly brands and individuals who are developing solutions for social and environmental. To save on cost, and in some cases, add visual appeal, the tea bags themselves have evolved into a toxic delivery system. While at times it may seem like a heavy hand of marketing, the podcast brings some clarity to how the company goes about choosing its vendors and its tactics for keeping the shop small and curated. Much of this progress is being tracked and made available to the public on their website and through their podcast, Inside Trader Joe’s, where the company is sharing insights on how they’re going about the transition and the people working on it. Now it seems like Trader Joe's is listening. RECALL [UPDATE]: Potential Listeria in Lightly Salted Edamame (only in AZ, SoCA, SoNV, UT) December 16, 2020 in Category: Recalls. Further, Trader Joe’s has made a recycling FAQ page about their different forms of packaging. Plastic, GMO and bleach are also worrisome contaminates from the tea bag. I cover a new taxonomy that looks at the crossroads of business and impact, particularly brands and individuals who are developing solutions for social and environmental problems. This also means that it makes it cheaper on some products because customers can go a la carte. © 2020 Forbes Media LLC. For example, they tried it out with English cucumbers. Fairfax: Buckets of flowers with Trader Joe's signs viewed from outside of store photo credit: Getty. For example, they tried it out with English cucumbers. They plan to eliminate non-recyclable plastic and foil pouches from tea packages. Other areas such as meats, which are housed in styrofoam trays, will be transitioned to PET1 trays, which are a “highly recyclable” type of plastic, the company claims. 15 Cookbooks & Recipes To Slay New Year’s Resolutions With ... 7 Vegan Delivery Services That Are Plant-Based Perfection, The Most Gift-Worthy Wine Baskets, Boxes, & Buckets, 12 Punny Mugs That Make WFH Mornings A Little Bit Better, Found: The Sweetest Online Shops For Ordering Holiday Treats, The Best Cookies To Order Online Ahead Of The Holidays, Shop Your Next Bottle From These Black-Owned Wine Companies, 14 Tasty Vegan Cookbooks That Are Anything But Strictly Salad. box containing 48 tea bags individually packaged in paper wrappers. Trader Joe’s Organic Earl Grey Tea Trader Joe’s, the cult-like grocery store chain, announced earlier this year that they’re taking a serious look at their plastic consumption. In recent years, the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting has supported my reporting from Asia, which looks at sustainable fashion, global health, and technology for development. Not all produce is easy to convert over to loose bins. They’ll also replace plastic flower bags with bags made of a renewable material. Trader Joe’s Organic Earl Grey Tea is a deceptively simple, organic blend of bold, full-bodied black tea from South India, balanced with an invigorating, floral black tea from Africa. Traditionally close-mouthed Trader Joe’s subtly announced in its latest Fearless Flyer newsletter it plans to start reducing plastic throughout its store, including fresh produce packaging. VT doesn’t have any Trader Joes, but the stores we do have (Hannaford, Price Chopper, Shaws) all use way, WAY less packaging…usually the plastic wraps are used for only organic produce and bags of potatoes/apples, etc. Some of these changes have already gone into effect in stores around the country. Trader Joe’s new plastic produce bags are 15” x 20,” which is a little larger than the standard plastic produce bag. With more plastic bans, from bags and straws to take-out containers, around the country, it's no surprise that fans of the chain have been urging it to reduce packaging. The remaining Styrofoam produce packages were replaced with bio-based, compostable trays, the company said. In a post under the "sustainability" tab on website — a section of the site we're guessing most customers don't frequent —, Trader Joes Takes Steps To Reduce Plastic In Its Stores. When you bring your own bags to Trader Joe’s and spend more than $25 on groceries, you’re entitled to head up to the customer service desk and ask to fill out a raffle ticket. Some Trader Joe's sell baguettes wrapped in highly recyclable paper, a better option than bread wrapped in plastic bags for those concerned about reducing plastic waste. As a freelance journalist, I’ve written for numerous publications, including the San Francisco Chronicle, New York Times, Atlantic, Economist, and The Guardian. The new bags are also easier to open and are capable of breaking down in landfills. Before the pandemic, oat milk was on the rise — now it's everywhere. Cucumbers, berries, more fragile vegetables need packaging to keep them fresh, avoid waste, and be practical to carry. Flowers, too, will come in bags made from compostable alternatives this fall. For instance, cloves of garlic, shallots, and smaller produce items will now be sold loose—no packaging whatsoever. In an update released this month, Trader Joe’s said that more than 20 produce items will get a makeover: either have more sustainable packaging or have the packaging eliminated altogether. Country Living reveal which tea bag brands do and don't have plastic in their bags. Drinking tea is a very British tradition – so much so that we consume 60.2 billion cups of tea each year, according to the UK Tea and Infusions Association.. And most of us tea-drinkers choose tea bags rather than tea leaves – 96% in fact. Here’s an update: they’re making progress. - Replacing the current plastic flower bags with bags made of a renewable material. Trader Joe’s English Breakfast Bagged Tea. THE PROBLEM WITH PLASTIC BAGS Plastic bags are bad for the environment because they take between 500 and 1,000 years to degrade. Trader Joes … While we may not always arrive at the right solution the first time, we remain steadfast in our dedication to this important work.”. 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