Meijer Seeks Eco-Friendly Suppliers for Upcoming Summit

Retailer aims to expand commitment to sustainable products
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
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To meet its sustainability standards, Meijer is targeting 38 certifications on vendor products, or their manufacturing and procurement processes, for its Sustainability Summit in October.

Meijer plans to host a Sustainability Summit this fall, expanding upon last year’s inaugural event to give more vendors across the country the chance to present their eco-friendly products for consideration by Meijer merchants.

Scheduled for Oct. 11-13, the virtual event will feature suppliers offering sustainable products in the food, health and beauty, everyday essentials, pets, apparel and general merchandise categories.

“At Meijer, we understand that to be a good company, we must be a good neighbor, which is why we're interested in meeting new vendors to further integrate sustainability attributes into our product offerings and daily operations,” noted Don Sanderson, the retailer’s chief merchandising and marketing officer. “We want to provide our customers with the great products they’re looking for while also being mindful of the impact those products make within our communities and the world around us.”

The Meijer Sustainability Summit has the goal of building relationships with environmentally conscious suppliers to expand the company’s sustainable product offerings across the store. To meet its sustainability standards, Meijer is targeting 38 certifications on vendor products, or their manufacturing and procurement processes. For instance, seafood merchants will look at vendors following the Best Aquaculture Practices, and toy merchants will seek vendors with Ecologo certifications to ensure that products are made without harmful chemicals. Meanwhile, grocery and consumable merchants will consider vendors that participate in the Rainforest Alliance Certification Program, which validates standards on forests, climate, human rights and livelihoods. Meijer will also seek products across all categories with sustainable packaging attributes.

Certified vendors with retail-ready products can apply online by Aug. 25. Meijer is working with Solon, Ohio-based Efficient Collaborative Retail Marketing (ECRM) and its subsidiary product discovery tool, San Francisco-based RangeMe, to host the event through the ECRM Connect virtual platform. Once applications for the event are submitted, Meijer will review and select the vendors to attend the summit. Suppliers not chosen for the summit will still be accessible through the RangeMe registration tool and may be reviewed again by Meijer in the future as its business needs change.

In related news,  Meijer recently hosted a Black Business Month Summit at the retailer’s headquarters. The event, created by Meijer’s supplier diversity team, reflects Meijer’s ongoing efforts to diversify its products and pipeline of suppliers. Held Aug. 16, the summit brought together Black vendors to exhibit their offerings and pitch their products to the company’s merchants.

Privately owned Meijer operates 500-plus supercenters, Meijer Grocery, neighborhood markets and Express locations throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin. The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based company is No. 23 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named the company one of its Retailers of the Century and Top 10 Most Sustainable Grocers

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