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Sustainability

We strictly adhere to all federal and state regulations, environmental conservation laws, food safety requirements and grocery retail requirements regarding the proper disposal of materials. See the laws below and how we practice due diligence.

Bottle

Recycling AKA Curbside Recycling of rigid containers like aluminum, glass and plastic

2006, The Mandatory Commercial Recycling Program put into law that all businesses that generated more than four cubic yards of commercial solid waste would be required to arrange for recycling.

We follow all requirements and reassess the effectiveness of our recycling program quarterly! We currently recycle all aluminum, glass and plastic in accordance with the guidelines of our local waste hauler. Check out the Sonoma Market Recycling Guide to find more info on recycling in your area!

CRV Recycling AKA California Redemption Value

1996, The Beverage Container Recycling Program put into law that recycling centers would refund consumers money on specified beverage containers.

We follow all requirements including displaying a sign at each of our locations with the address of the closest recycling center. Since no recycling center exists in many of our communities, we are required to accept redemptions, unless exempted by law.

Please note, most of our locations are exempt from this requirement.

Plastic bag

Recycling LDPE AKA Recycling plastic film and other flexible plastics

2006, The At-Store Recycling Program requires stores that offer plastic carryout bags to have a recycling bin for consumers and annually report their purchasing and recycling numbers. This law came into direct conflict in 2018 when China’s SWORD Policy drastically diminished the available market to recycle LDPE. You can find a recycling bin available for all clean, clear plastic bags at all of our locations.

Plastic Bag Ban

2014, California Plastic Bag Ban prohibited stores from providing a single-use carryout bag to consumers for less than $0.10. All money collected must be used to pay for costs associated with compliance, costs of providing recycled paper bags or reusable grocery bags, or costs of providing educational materials to encourage the use of reusable bags. All reusable carryout bags made from plastic or paper must be made from a minimum of 40% postconsumer recycled material.

We have followed all requirements including: changing the single-use plastic bag to a reusable plastic bag made from 100% recycled material, 40% postconsumer recycled material and 50% green energy; purchasing paper bags made with 40% postconsumer recycled material and certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative; annual creation of reusable bags for purchase by our talented Marketing team; sourcing reusable bags for purchase in-store; creation of ’Don’t forget your reusable bag“ reminders in the parking lot; and promoting reusable bags across all social media channels.

2020 AB2449 AKA SB129 AKA Recycling plastic bags in store

In 2011, Assembly Bill 2449 required that all retailers offering plastic bags for checkout would provide guests a bin to return the bags for recycling. In 2013, Senate Bill 1219 extended this bill and its provisions. This bill remained in effect until January 1, 2020 and has ceased to be extended due to the lack of market availability to recycle plastic bags. We maintain strict adherence to all recycling guidelines and strive to recycle everything we can. While we will continue to recycle the plastic produced within our stores, we will unfortunately have to remove the recycling bin at the front of our stores for guest use. You can find more info about plastic recycling and a list of other retailers who will take your plastic bags on calrecycle.ca.gov.

Biohazzard symbol

RCRA AKA Resource Conservation and Recovery¬†Act Laws for Hazardous Waste Management

Updated 2020, The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Laws describe the steps to properly manage, keep record of and transport all materials deemed hazardous. We have followed and continue to follow all requirements, strictly adhering to the most up-to-date best practices. We have a team of Safety Gurus who oversee the day-to-day handling at the store level to ensure our associates and our guests are safe at all times when in store. We also follow all laws set by the RCRA Laws for the proper management of Universal Waste (including electronics) and used oil.

Apple core

Organics Recycling

2019, The Mandatory Commercial Organics Recycling put into law that all businesses that generated more than four cubic yards of commercial solid waste would be required to arrange for organics recycling.

Since 2015, we have followed and continue to follow all requirements, reassessing the effectiveness of our organics recycling program quarterly! We currently turn our inedible food waste into fertilizer through our partnership with California Safe Soil and into compost through our partnership with our local waste hauler.

A chicken and two eggs

Cage Free Chicken Initiative

Beginning January 1, 2022, all eggs sold in California must come from cage-free facilities. Sonoma Market is committed to only selling eggs produced by cage free hens by the end of this year. In fact, more than 72% of all eggs currently sold at Sonoma Market are from cage-free hens. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, the supply of cage-free eggs has been inconsistent for nearly a year. However, egg producers continue to construct new cage free facilities, more hens are being raised cage free and the supply of cage-free eggs is growing weekly. By the end of this year, we will only sell cage-free eggs.

Proposition 12

In addition to the Cage-Free Initiative, the 2008 Proposition was expanded to pigs. Beginning January 1, 2022, all pork sold in California must come from pigs that have met the minimum size requirements; this includes pigs raised inside and outside of California. We commit to only selling products within this regulation by the end of this year.

Building icon

California Green Building Code (CALGreen)

Updated 2020, California Green Building Code put into law sustainable requirements for all new construction. In the recent construction of our Corporate Headquarters, we have followed all requirements including but not limited to inventive storm water pollution preventive bioswells, bicycle storage and showers, electric vehicle charging and associate parking spaces, energy and water reduction, recycled content in building materials, and construction waste reduction. In addition, the building includes sustainable materials such as state-of-the-art HVAC equipment, a living green wall, high-energy-index windows and autoshades to reduce heating and cooling, and solar panels.