Kroger details progress on energy conservation and waste reduction

Cincinnati -- The Kroger Co. has saved more than 2.34 billion kilowatt hours of electricity, which equals 1.47 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, in 2011, according to the chain’s sixth annual Sustainability Report.

"In 2011, our stores saved enough energy to power every single-family home in Columbus, Ohio, for a single year,” said David B. Dillon, Kroger's chairman and CEO. “We're proud to have donated the equivalent of 160 million meals to local food banks through our partnership with Feeding America, placing us among the top-tier donors.”

According to the report, one of Kroger's new stores will consume 30% less energy than a store built in 2000. The chain has reduced energy consumption through the increased use of LED lighting, motion sensors, skylights and control systems that monitor lighting, heating and cooling and refrigeration.

In addition, Kroger increased fleet efficiency by 9.75% in 2011, and by 25.5% since 2008.

Other highlights of Kroger's environmental and social sustainability progress in 2011 include:

  • The company's Ralphs/Food 4 Less Division designed and built a unique resource recovery system, which is expected to convert 55,000 tons of unsold organics, annually, into renewable energy that will power its own facility.
  • Nineteen of Kroger's 39 manufacturing plants sent "zero waste" to the landfill.
  • Kroger stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers recycled more than 1.1 billion pounds of corrugated cardboard and paper.
  • Improved bagging techniques and increased use of reusable bags have prevented approximately 1 billion plastic bags from being used since 2008. In 2011, Kroger sold and provided customers with more than 5.3 million reusable bags, an average of 14,200 per day.

The report is available at Sustainability.kroger.com.