Two of Albertsons Santa Barbara stores have reached “zero waste” classification in their daily operations. Through a combination of recycling programs, a food donation program and a joint organic composting program with the City of Santa Barbara, the two grocery stores now divert all non-contaminated waste from landfills and incinerators. In total, over 95% of all waste products from both stores are recycled, reused or composted — exceeding the 90% threshold commonly recognized as zero waste.
The stores are located at 3943 State Street and 2010 Cliff Drive in Santa Barbara. The State Street store has reached 95.9% in total waste diversion, with Cliff Drive store achieving 95.1%. Together, the stores divert annually on average 2,074,328 pounds of waste from the landfill, including 808,200 pounds of cardboard, 27,524 pounds of plastic and 2,688 pounds of paper.
Albertsons also partnered with the City of Santa Barbara to establish one of the first citywide composting programs in the US. As a result, the city will compost 4,000,000 pounds of foodscraps from 120 program participants this year alone.
Another key component of the waste diversion program includes donating staple and perishable product that would otherwise go unused to area food banks. Through Albertsons Fresh Rescue Program, these two stores donate on average a total of 149,598 pounds per year of food to the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County.