Gilbert-based company towards a plastic-free grocery store

GILBERT, Ariz. (3TV/CBS 5) – One of the keys to reducing our carbon footprint is to use less plastic. And one of the companies playing a leading role in the transition to more environmentally friendly packaging is Footprint, headquartered in Gilbert, Arizona.

“Our long-term vision and plans at Footprint are to transform every aisle of this grocery store,” said Footprint Senior Vice President of Sales Jeff Bassett.

Bassett and his team at Footprint realize that plastic doesn’t disappear overnight. “It’s a huge situation we’re in with a lot of plastic,” Bassett said.

In the meantime, Bassett hopes that by creating sustainable plant-fiber alternatives for everything from straws to coolers, Arizonans won’t feel so overwhelmed on their journey to a more eco-friendly lifestyle.

“The first way a consumer will understand your sustainability message is through your packaging,” he said. “It’s the first thing they interact with when they buy your product. So the longer you can make this sustainable, the more you can communicate your position to your consumers. »

Restaurants like Panera or Chick-Fil-A have already understood the impact that Footprint packaging can have. “Last year, we were able to replace 565 million plastic straws with our fiber straws,” Bassett said. “That’s equivalent to eliminating one million pounds of plastic or 33 plastic city buses.”

It’s pretty clear at this point that using less plastic is a good thing. But are the alternatives to vegetable fibers more profitable? Footprint says that, on average, fiber alternatives are only a penny or two more than plastic options. That’s why Bassett is optimistic about the creation of a plastic-free grocery store in the near future.

“In the next 2-5 years, I think the pressure is going to be overwhelming for brands to make the transition and really think twice about the amount and types of plastic they use,” he said. . “We actually see a future where there will be a lower cost than plastic today.”

About Marilyn Perkins

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