US: Walmart joins sustainable agriculture alliance


The world’s largest retailer Walmart Stores Inc has joined an alliance of other Fortune 500 companies, including Cargill and Kellogg Co, seeking to make agriculture more sustainable.

The Field to Market alliance was started three years ago by the non-profit Keystone Center to improve agricultural productivity and reduce the use of natural resources. It includes farm groups, grain handlers and food makers but Walmart is the first retailer in the group and now its largest member.

“We have pretty ambitious goals to sell products that are sustainable and this is directly within that framework,” Rob Kaplan, Walmart’s senior manager of sustainability, said of the new partnership.

Wal-Mart is seeking to eliminate 20 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from its global supply chain by the end of 2015. Last year, the company said it turned 1.2 million pounds of cooking oil recovered from its stores into biodiesel, soap and a supplement for cattle feed.

Other members of the alliance include Bunge Ltd, Coca-Cola Co and the National Corn Growers Association.