Scarborough, Maine-based Hannaford said it plans to be fully powered by renewable energy by 2024—a commitment that is part of the Northeast supermarket’s sustainability strategy.
"Doing what’s right for our business includes doing what’s right for our associates, community and our planet. Powering Hannaford with 100% renewable energy sources will make an immediate, positive impact on greenhouse gas emissions,” said Mike Vail, president of Hannaford Supermarkets, in a statement. “This is an important leap forward in our sustainability journey—and one that we hope sparks others to join. Prioritizing the health of our communities and the planet is a win for us all.”
The Ahold Delhaize banner, has committed to be a net-zero carbon business by 2040. The retailer said in a statement that the “first step in that journey is to move to 100% renewable energy.” Hannaford said it has rooftop solar on 10 of its stores. The company also said it operates at 30% renewable energy by partnering with over 30 community solar projects across Maine, Massachusetts and New York.
Peter Cooke, co-founder of the Ratio Institute, an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating measurable sustainability and viability in food retail, said Hannaford is “light-years ahead of the rest of the industry when it comes to their sustainability efforts—and they’ve been doing so for well over a decade.”
Cooke, who has worked with more than 1,000 grocery stores and 15 grocery chains as part of his Grocery Stewardship work, said, “Hannaford associates continue to rally behind making the company more sustainable and that is an advantage to their current and future success in making the planet healthier and greener.”
Working to reduce its energy consumption and converted 86.4MW of its remaining electricity usage to solar, Hannaford said it will upscale in Maine and New York by integrating community and large-scale solar projects to "propel stores to the 100% green milestone by 2024."
“Hannaford has always been serious about sustainability—and over time, it’s become an integral business function. But there is a sense of urgency as we witness the planet in the midst of a climate crisis,” said George Parmenter, who leads sustainability efforts for Hannaford. “Hannaford wants to lead where we can make the most impact—and renewable energy is just another step in our journey.”
A list of Hannaford’s prior sustainability efforts’ milestones include:
- Becoming the first grocery retailer in the nation to introduce reusable bags to its customers in the mid-1980s.
- Earning notable distinction with the introduction of North America’s first LEED Platinum supermarket in Augusta, Maine, for eco-friendly, energy-saving features that use approximately half the energy requirements of grocery stores of similar size and character in 2009.
- Installing a first-in-the-nation refrigeration system using natural refrigerant that is better for the environment and earning Hannaford a “Best of the Best” award from the U.S. EPA Green Chill Partnership in 2013.
- Introducing and expanding electric-vehicle charging stations to parking areas for a total of 163 plugs at 31 stores (and growing) throughout the Northeast.
- And most recently, becoming the first large-scale grocery retailer in its marketplace to achieve zero food waste-to-landfill by donating or diverting all food at risk of going to waste in 2021.