IFCO Systems and Walmart have announced a multi-year agreement that will expand the retailer’s use of IFCO reusable plastic containers (RPC) for fresh fruits and vegetables.
IFCO will become Walmart’s exclusive RPC packaging provider for select fresh produce products in the US.
Dan Martin, outgoing president of IFCO North America, said the move was a positive one for both companies.
“IFCO and Walmart share the goal of an efficient, sustainable fresh food supply chain that helps nourish millions of Americans and billions of consumers worldwide,” said Martin.
“This agreement is a win for IFCO, a win for Walmart, a win for the environment and a win for millions of grocery shoppers across America.”
The new seven-year agreement builds on the partnership which has existed between the two companies since 1998. Walmart suppliers will deliver their produce to Walmart locations using IFCO RPCs after which Each RPC will be retrieved after each use and cleaned, washed, sanitised and wrapped before being used again. IFCO RPCs are used up to 100 times before being reground into new RPCs.
Martin Mundo, Walmart senior vice president, produce and GPS, said using RPCs would help reduce carbon dioxide emissions, water use, waste and product damage.
“Walmart is committed to providing its shoppers with high quality, safe, nutritious and affordable fresh food produced sustainably,” Mundo said.
“Our new agreement with IFCO helps us deliver on that promise by creating a fresh food supply chain that is more efficient and more sustainable from beginning to end.”