Initiatives by London Drugs to rein in the amount of waste produced by the company and its customers are paying off.

London Drugs, recycling, What's the Green Deal, Clint Mahlman, western Canada drug chain, waste diversion

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London Drugs tallies results of recycling efforts

April 17th, 2013

RICHMOND, British Columbia – Initiatives by London Drugs to rein in the amount of waste produced by the company and its customers are paying off.

The western Canada drug chain said Tuesday that more than 74% of the company's waste is now recycled or repurposed instead of going to a landfill.

London Drugs noted that, in the 1980s, it was one of Canada's first retailers to offer customers the opportunity to recycle plastic shopping bags. Since that time, the range of recycling solutions and list of items and materials that the chain recycles has swelled.

Since the 2008 launch of London Drugs' educational "What's the Green Deal?" program and with the support of its staff and customers, the pharmacy chain now recycles more than 42 million pounds of materials, including Styrofoam, batteries, computers, televisions, cell phones, paper, plastic, cardboard and metals.

"London Drugs believes in contributing positively to the communities we serve, as we have since 1945," Clint Mahlman, senior vice president and chief operating officer at London Drugs, said in a statement. "By providing leadership in the retail industry and education for our staff and customers, we are making a difference in everyone's journey towards more sustainable options and lessening the impact to our environments."

Mahlman noted that in recent years, the What's the Green Deal? program has garnered a strong response from customers. "More and more customers are bringing in their product packaging, used batteries, electronics and other recyclable goods," he stated. "During Earth Month, we hope consumers become even more conscious of proper waste disposal and options for products with less impact on the environment."

Overall, London Drugs' waste diversion rate rose from 67% in 2011 to 74% in 2012. And individual stores have gone even further, the company said, adding that it aims to have all London Drugs stores achieve 95% waste diversion by 2015. Some of London Drugs' 76 locations already are at that benchmark. The chain said its Oliver Square West store in Edmonton, Alberta, posted a 93% recycling rate, and its Olympic Village Store in Vancouver has achieved a 96% recycling rate.

Materials that London Drugs accepts for recycling include electrical and electronic goods (TVs, VCRs, computers, monitors, printers, etc.); small appliances; styrofoam, plastic and cardboard packaging from products sold; cell phones, PDAs and rechargeable batteries; alkaline batteries; compact fluorescent bulbs and fluorescent light tubes up to four feet; disposable cameras; ink jet and laser printer cartridges; metal film canisters; plastic bags, pop bottles and cans; insurance plastic folders; Brita water filters; candy bar and cosmetic packaging; Soda Stream containers; and toys.