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First major grocery chain in the country to reduce food waste and support farmers by selling imperfect produce
Raley’s Family of Fine Stores is the first major grocery chain in the United States to begin selling produce that might otherwise be headed for the landfill. The new program will offer a new path toward affordable produce and an additional way to showcase Raley’s best in fresh. The “REAL GOOD” produce program will offer customers scarred, aesthetically challenged produce for a lower cost than the unblemished products the chain is famous for.
“Raley’s ‘REAL GOOD’ Produce program is a new way that we can support our growers and reduce food waste while offering our customers the best quality in fresh,” said Meg Burrit, Raley’s Director of Wellness and Sustainability. “While the ‘REAL GOOD’ produce may be uniquely shaped, sized, or colored, you can also count on it having that great Raley’s flavor and quality – at great low prices.”
Raley’s is partnering with Imperfect, whose goal is to market these cosmetically challenged fruits and vegetables so that they can be bought and eaten instead of wasted. According to a NRDC report, up to 30% of produce grown in the United States is discarded, often as a result of arbitrary aesthetic standards that do not affect the flavor or nutritional value of the produce.
(http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2015/06/17/414986650/to-tackle-food-waste-big-grocery-chain-will-sell-produce-rejects). Imperfect will work with farmers to provide slightly blemished produce to Raley’s stores.
“Imperfect is thrilled to be partnering with Raley’s to bring ugly produce to their customers,” said Ben Simon, CEO of Imperfect. “We expect folks to see that even the fruits and vegetables that look a little wonky on the outside still have just as great quality and taste. At the end of the day, it is what is on the inside that counts.”
The REAL GOOD produce program rolls out on July 11 at ten Raley’s locations, with summer produce offerings such as REAL GOOD Plums, REAL GOOD Peppers and REAL GOOD Pears at prices 25% to 30% lower than flawless produce. The 10 Raley’s stores that will participate include:
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