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UV sanitizer diverts 400,000+ pounds of plastic from landfill

fresh-n-easy.jpgFresh & Easy Neighborhood Market—a West Coast-based group of neighborhood-sized supermarkets in California, Nevada, and Arizona—has diverted more than 400,000 pounds of plastic display trays from landfills through the use of a proprietary ultraviolet-light sanitizing machine. With this technology, the company has reused more than 2 million plastic display trays, material that may otherwise have been discarded.

UV Doctor (www.uvdoctor.com), a company based in Las Vegas specializing in UV light technologies, engineered and built this custom machine for Fresh & Easy to sanitize the packaging used to display products in stores. By using UV light technology to safely disinfect and sanitize its plastic display trays, Fresh & Easy says it is able to significantly reduce its carbon emissions, petroleum use, and landfill waste. To date, this sanitation process has helped save over 1.14 million pounds of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere, the company says.

Resource Management Group (RMG, www.rmgrecycling.com), a San Diego-based waste management and recycling company, works on-site at Fresh & Easy’s Riverside, CA, distribution center to recycle and reuse tons of material collected at stores. RMG sanitizes about 60 plastic display trays per minute using the UV machine.

"Fresh & Easy's approach to minimizing their environmental footprint across multiple levels is proving to be successful,” says RMG president Armen Derderian. “It is a testament to their ability to think outside the box and remain fearless and steadfast when faced with the changes required in this new environmental age of business; a sign of true market leadership.”

"By being thoughtful in how we operate all parts of our business, we’ve been able to make a significant difference in our overall environmental impact,” says Fresh & Easy CEO Tim Mason. “We are looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint—from energy-efficient refrigeration to lights in stores that automatically dim to our solar panel installation on our distribution center.”

Fresh & Easy has also committed to build LEED- (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified buildings, and has voluntarily joined the California Climate Action Registry to disclose its greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, the company has invested in a 500,000-sq-ft solar roof installation on its distribution center in Riverside, which currently produces more than 75% of the center’s energy.

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