Reimagining organics recycling for Kroger

The Problem

Reverse logistics in the retail industry is a best practice for most recyclable materials, like cardboard and plastics. However, the perceived myth about unsold organics is that it’s food waste. It’s not food waste. It’s just food that didn’t sell.

Our Solution

Divert performed a full-scale organics reverse logistics pilot for Kroger in Portland, OR. We implemented a program that required no depackaging of organics and worked with a local food rescue organization to optimize the donation process.

Our tracked bins helped ensure that expired food, cut fruit and other non-donatable items were removed almost daily, rather than every week, thereby creating a cleaner store and simpler process. With the addition of our technology, we provided Kroger with insight into their retail store operations that no one else could provide.

The Results

Within days, we were able to rollout a better, simpler, cleaner and more transparent organics program that reduced waste costs by +15%. Store associates are happier because the backroom is cleaner and less smelly — and it’s far easier to properly dispose of organics. The transportation team is excited to utilize their fleet more efficiently. Meanwhile, the solution is delivering a +30% savings to Kroger.

Key Takeaway Stats




Waste Cost Reduction

"Within 10 days, we were able to rollout a better, simpler, cleaner, more transparent program that reduced waster costs by 15%. This solution is so simple — it’s just a better way."

— Store Manager, Kroger