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Grocery chain in Yamanashi recycling food waste

March 26, 2008

A large supermarket chain in <st1:placename w:st="on">Yamanashi</st1:placename> <st1:placetype w:st="on">Prefecture</st1:placetype> (<st1:place w:st="on"><st1:country-region w:st="on">Japan</st1:country-region></st1:place>), Yamato Co., is actively engaged in household food waste recycling.

Food waste from shoppers is processed by kitchen waste composters at the stores, and the compost is distributed to contract farmers in order to grow vegetables.  These vegetables are then sold at the supermarket chain.

In March 2007, Yamato installed a kitchen waste composter in one of its stores that could handle about 150 kilograms of waste per day, equivalent to the output from 300 households.  Waste is now collected in all of its stores.

The company also introduced an ‘eco point’ system providing points equal to approximately $US .4 cents (5 yen) for member shoppers who bring food waste.

The total volume of waste brought to the stores per day averages 70 to 80 kilograms.  The amount of kitchen garbage brought by shoppers is expected to increase.

<st1:placename w:st="on">Yamanashi</st1:placename> <st1:placetype w:st="on">Prefecture</st1:placetype> is one of 21 local governments in <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Japan</st1:place></st1:country-region> that are currently Members of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability.  For more information on ICLEI and its activities in <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:country-region w:st="on">Japan</st1:country-region></st1:place>, please visit www.iclei.org/japan.

Source:  “Local Supermarket Promotes Food Waste Recycling”, Japan for Sustainability, 3 March 2008.