ALDI, a shortened form of Albrecht Diskont is a German discount supermarket chain. It is known for providing quality items at low costs, and hence is a staple in the majority of households. A lot of brands start using all means and ends to make their business work out. Today we will investigate that is Aldi ethical or not.
A major concern over big brands is how they are sourcing their products and whether they are handling their businesses responsibly. When a brand becomes popular, there is pressure to keep growing the business or at least be consistent in profits.
Steps Taken By Aldi | Is Aldi Ethical?
Aldi recently released a sustainability charter, which outlined their green plans for the company. Some of the noticeable features mentioned in it include –
- They aim at diverting more than ninety percent of their operational waste by the year 2025.
- They have taken measures that will ensure a 50% reduction in food waste by 2030.
- 26% reduction in emission of greenhouse gases by 2025.
- Make their entire private packaging recyclable or compostable by 2025.
- Practice more sustainable sourcing practices overall.
This may sound like a tough task for a corporation as big as Aldi but their being transparent in their commitment goes on to show how they are sure in their plans of being ethical.
Where Does Aldi Source The Products From?
Aldi has a lot of products of all kinds, so of course, it owes a lot of responsibility to a lot of different industries. Here we have tried to sum up their policies regarding their most popular products.
A lot of Aldi beef is locally sourced from cattle farms. This has a lot of benefits – the customers get fresh meat and the cattle farm owners get profitable businesses as the long line of middlemen is cut. The cattle are well fed and taken care of in a genuine manner, and not just left there to be meat for slaughter.
Sourcing regional farmers who desperately need the business also helps in cutting the cost of transportation which also means the amount of energy and resources in transportation is also quite less. Hence, just by choosing a locally sourced place for their products, Aldi has helped in reducing carbon emission, supporting small businesses, and providing healthy options for its customers.
However, not all kinds of meats are available locally. When meat is imported from other places, as per the FDA regulations, the country of origin is stated on the packaging. This transparency is another measure that has made Aldi earn the trust of its customers.
In 2017, Aldi was under the radar for using North Korean slave labor for their seafood processing, especially salmon. That is not the case anymore. The mark of a good company is when it takes accountability.
Most of the Aldi-associated fisheries are now located in the US. They are well-managed and the workers are treated nicely and paid their dues.
Green Practices at Aldi
Aldi charges for bags which makes its customers bring their own to the stores. It helps in cutting plastic and paper use.
Aldi installed its very first wind turbine in its Dwight, Ill branch. This turbine has helped in reducing the wastage of energy by 40 percent.
Almost all stores have LED lighting and solar panels along with energy-efficient coolers. This helps in building a sustainable environment in the workplace. It also reduces cost and pollution. If every store starts using these measures, we can cut down a lot of wastage and pollution.
Limiting the hours of operation is another way Aldi has reduced its energy wastage. Customers are allowed between 9 am-9 pm. This has restricted the duration of their usage of lights and resources.
Aldi also cuts costs by having practical displays in its stores instead of aesthetic ones. The simple black-lined shelves serve the purpose of displaying the products which are ultimately what matters.
It also stocks a limited supply of things. This is because everything is mostly locally/freshly sourced. Lesser the waste, the less energy required to dispose of it. This also ensures less power and resources are used every day to manufacture things.
Employee Treatment At Aldi
Employees earn more than minimum wage. People at the management level have good packages with inexpensive healthcare. Work hours are flexible.
Aldi did come under fire for overworking its employees and making them work for every penny, but after the slave labor fiasco of 2017, they have mended their ways in numerous ways.
The cashiers are allowed to sit, and there is no phone customer service so that they don’t have to waste their time attending calls for complaints. The stores are generally smaller than other supermarket chains and the shifts are easy to manage. Hence, the workers can work efficiently and not get tired easily.
Aldi also has a corporate responsibility website, which addresses issues raised by employees and workers. They take full responsibility and accountability and try to work these things through with their workers on a local level.
Overall, it is visible that Aldi is always working on improving itself as a brand name in a way that matters. They have set their eyes on a noble cause and are working towards its fruition.
Hence, we can conclude on our question ‘Is Aldi Ethical’ that Aldi is an ethically sourced brand that focuses on bringing forth ethically sourced products and being environmentally conscious in all ways possible. They still have a long way to go, but they have started and have shown great results, so we can trust them to do better and better.