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"Spain: Lidl, first retailer awarded with Aenor's "Zero waste" certificate"

The supermarket chain Lidl has been the first distribution company in Spain to be awarded with the "Zero Waste" certificate from Aenor. Lidl has obtained this certificate thanks to the work carried out in terms of sustainability in its new logistics platform in Alcalá de Henares, Madrid; the tenth of the company in Spain and also the largest and most sustainable of the group in Europe, which will absorb a total investment of 70 million Euro.

This certificate proves that 100% of the waste generated by this facility is recycled to be used as new resources or raw materials, thus ensuring that no waste is thrown away. The company admits that converting waste "is not economically profitable," since it costs four times more than taking it to a landfill, as explained by Michaela Reischi, director of Corporate Social Responsibility at Lidl Spain. 16% of the waste generated in Alcalá consists of fresh food remains unfit for human consumption. To get the "Zero Waste" certificate, this waste needs to be sorted and transformed. "The real challenge is to transform that waste, which has no value by definition, into something useful," stated Reichi. In this sense, "we are proud to have received this recognition to our work, which is encouraging us to continue betting on sustainability in all areas of our activity, from the environment to people, offering our customers healthy food with sustainable raw materials," pointed out the director of CSR.

With this new recognition, together with the BREEAM and VERDE environmental certifications obtained last year, Lidl's logistics platform in Alcalá has become an example for the sector. The first stage of this complex was inaugurated last September, serving a network of 150 stores in the central area, where Lidl supplies fresh products daily. Moreover, the company also manages its after-sales service for its products sold during thematic weeks from this platform, making it one of its most important logistics centres in the country.

Thanks to the new "Zero waste" process, 100% of the more than 2,900 tonnes of waste that will be managed at these facilities each year will eventually become raw materials for future use. To this end, a complex system has been put in place that separates and sorts waste into 22 categories. About 80% of the total volume of waste is grouped into six of these 22 categories: cardboard (54%) plastic (7%), textile (7%), dry feed (5%), wood (2%) and scrap (2%).


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