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Walmart Sustainability Expo

I had quite an experience this past week.  I had the opportunity to speak in front of large group of CEO’s. Not just any CEO’s – but those from Fortune 500 AND 100 companies.  And, companies who all showed up for Walmart’s Sustainability Expo.  Companies like Frito-Lay/Pepsi, Campbell’s, Cargill, Kellogg, General Mills, Unilever, P&G, Johnson and Johnson, and many more were invited to speak about what efforts they have already achieved towards more sustainability in their procuring ingredients/materials, manufacturing, shipping, etc. and also to make new promises to do even more. Promises that were spoken in front of crowds, documented, and signed.

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It was exciting to hear these companies talk about what they were doing individually and collectively.  Regardless of your own personal stance on these companies, we can all agree that big companies like these should do more to help save our planet and make responsible decisions for all of our futures.  I think the things I heard at the expo were all steps in the right direction.

I can’t speak for each of the companies at the expo that reported, but I have been a Wamart mom {a blogger on their ambassador program} for the past 6 years.  And, during that time I have always been blown away by the sincerity of the CEO’s I’ve meet and talked to at Walmart.  Of course, all companies want to make money – they want to see profits – greater profits each year, and Wamart is no exception. But, they really do believe the way to more profits {what is good for them} is to be good to the customer, by saving the customer money and bringing them affordable products that they want and need.  Their “save money, live better” motto is for real.  I’m always most impressed at their desire to hear from us moms and what we think about what is going on at our stores, what we think about their products. They REALLY do want to know that what they are doing is what the customer wants.  And, this sustainability expo proved to be no different.

And speaking of the opportunities I’ve had from working with Walmart, this experience actually started almost a month ago when a film crew headed out to the homes of four of the Walmart Moms; me, Jenn {Frugal Upstate}, Jennae {Green Your Decor and Green and Gorgeous} and Nicole {Presley’s Pantry}.  Their job was to find out what sustainability meant to each of us.  Check it out–I think it turned out great and you’ll get to see my cute kids make their debut as well. :)

At the expo, I was asked to speak along with fellow Walmart Mom, Jenn Fowler, of Frugal Upstate up on stage in front of the whole crowd. The questions they asked us were what did we think of the efforts that were discussed so far during the expo and what did we believe Walmart could do better towards more sustainability.

The most exciting thing I heard discussed was that many of the companies in attendance have agreed to contribute to a closed loop fund along with Walmart to provide funds for local communities, cities, etc. to begin or expand recycling efforts.  {The fund will invest $100 million in recycling infrastructure projects}.  As someone who lives in a very rural area with very little recycling efforts in place, this was exciting to hear.  Making it EASIER to recycle will hopefully more people WILL recycle.

And when asked what could Walmart do better?  I gave the response I’ve been giving each time I’m given the opportunity, and I think this time they heard us loud and clear.  I want more organic products and produce on the shelves and I want better labeling so that I can find what I’m looking for.  Shopping with two small children is tough – and even tougher when we’re on the look out for organic and sustainable products. It sometimes feels more like trying to find needles in a haystack!   And hopefully we’ll begin to see this change! Hooray!

There were MANY other exciting innitiaves and goals announced.  You can read all about them here.  Also, you can search the #WalmartExpo hashtag for more about what we heard and learned, and share what you think about Walmart’s commitment to sustainability. I’d genuinely love to hear your thoughts, and Walmart would too.

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Comments

  1. Gina Burrell says:

    This is AMAZING! Thank you for speaking out for more organic produce and healthier options. I have four kids age 6 and under. It is VERY difficult to stand around reading labels when you have young kids in tow and want to be able to get through the store as quickly as possible. I make a trip to Walmart and a separate trip to another store for organic products. It would be so nice to be able to get everything in one place.

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Amen, Hallelujah! Glad to hear that I’m not alone! :)
      I often make two trips as well. I try to alternate the weeks but it doesn’t always work out that way!
      Denise
      Wholesome Mommy

  2. You were in my neck of the woods then – I jus tlive a few miles from Walmrt HDQTS. We love all they’ve done for our community.

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Thanks for the comment! Rogers/Bentonville are both so quaint. I always enjoy my visit. :)
      Denise
      Wholesome Mommy

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