Reducing Hazardous Chemicals in Production

Reducing the use of harmful chemicals is one way in which ALDI continues to protect our people and our planet.

ALDI’s Environmental Compliance

ALDI is proud to be the first and only Australian supermarket to make a commitment to eliminating the use of harmful chemicals used in textile and shoe production around the world.

Across the whole ALDI South Group, we set ambitious standards and introduced comprehensive chemical management across all tiers in the supply chain. This has led to an increased treatment of factory wastewater and improved wastewater and sludge testing results. A highly efficient overview of our supply chain also enables us to support strategic production facilities to meet our requirements.

 Check out ALDI’s Environmental Compliance Detox video for more information.

1. Leather Working Group (LWG)

leather working group logo

Within the leather industry, tanneries are known to use large amounts of energy and toxic chemicals during the tanning process. This is why we work with the LWG, who are an organisation that offers a suite of auditing tools to assess the environmental performance of leather manufacturing facilities. Since 2005, the LWG have identified environmental best practices in the industry and provided guidelines for continual improvement. The founding members were a group of well-known brands who came together to focus on sustainability within the leather industry. Read more here.

2. Increasing Transparency in our Supply Chain

machinery on farm

In 2020, we also started to publish our main production facilities for textiles and shoes on the ALDI South Group website and the Open Apparel Registry (OAR) platform. Here we have published the name, address and number of employees of our main production facilities used for the manufacturing of garment textiles and shoes. This information is updated biannually. With this level of transparency, we are providing our customers with further information on where ALDI products come from.

3. Monitoring Wastewater and Chemical Use

Our goal is to improve chemical management and reduce hazardous chemical use within our product supply chains. To achieve our goal, ALDI has aligned to the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) programme, which requires our suppliers to work towards phasing out hazardous chemicals and achieving the reporting limits for wastewater and sludge. You can read further information about ZDHC here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Within the textile and shoe supply chain there may be chemicals present which cause harm to the human body as well as the environment. These may include chemicals that are hormone disruptors or carcinogenic (can cause cancer). These chemicals can also be toxic once washed into the waterways, negatively impacting aquatic life and local ecosystems. This is why ALDI has made a commitment to eliminate harmful chemicals from our textile and shoe supply chains.

Per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), among other uses, are used to create finishes and coatings which provide fabrics with water and oil-repellent properties. The health effects of PFCs on humans are currently uncertain. However, in studies of laboratory animals given large amounts of PFCs, growth, development and reproduction were affected. Eliminating and finding substitutes for PFCs is challenging, which is why we have collaborated with the Rudolf Group to provide PFC-free alternatives to our supply chain partners when producing water repellent textiles, such as our snow gear.