I was just in Brazil where I walked the aisles of one of our eco-efficient stores. These are amazing buildings packed with great ideas ranging from express aisles for customers using reusable bags to infrastructure made from recycled material. I snapped a few photos with my BlackBerry which you’ll see below.
When I was at this eco-efficient store in Sao Paulo, I also had the chance to see first-hand an innovative partnership that is changing our industry. In the laundry aisle, I found a great example of End to End, where Walmart Brazil is partnering with top suppliers to examine the lifecycle of their products and make them more sustainable.
The laundry aisle features detergent that is concentrated and in smaller containers. We’ve learned that compaction can confuse consumers and leave them feeling as if they aren’t getting as much as they used to for their money, something I mentioned that we also experienced in the U.S. Now, the aisle also includes plenty of labeling and education so that they recognize they are saving just as much and helping the environment at the same time.
People should not have to choose between products they can afford and products that are better for the planet. End to End is helping make sustainability more affordable by studying the environmental impacts of products across their lifecycle or “from end to end.”
Walmart Brazil is finding big opportunities to decrease packaging and water and incorporate more recycled materials. And the benefits go beyond Walmart. Suppliers see the benefits and incorporate the changes into the products they supply to others.
What’s happening in Brazil really is a model and something to aspire to. You can read more about it: http://walmartstores.com/sites/ResponsibilityReport/2011/social_Communities.aspx