15 October 2020. The El Corte Inglés Group is Asturias has been granted Zero Waste certification by AENOR for all its establishments in Asturias, as well as for its logistics platform located in Siero. As a result, El Corte Inglés has become the first company in the region to prove that at least 90% of all its waste fractions avoid landfill as the final destination. El Corte Inglés is the first Spanish distribution company in Asturias to obtain this certification.
The certificate award ceremony was attended by the Director of AENOR in Asturias, Juan Lucas García; the Regional Director of El Corte Inglés for Galicia and Asturias, Javier Esteban; El Corte Inglés Regional Operations Manager and Head of the Zero Waste Project in Galicia and Asturias, Enrique Ramos; the director of El Corte Inglés in Oviedo, Gabriel Muñoz; and the Director of Communication and Institutional Relations of El Corte Inglés for Galicia and Asturias, Pati Blanco.
This certification helps organisations to optimise their processes, focusing on reducing waste generation to recognise the impetus for a Circular Economy, which prioritises reuse and recycling, taking advantage of waste to be reused as a raw material for new processes. In this way, the company is ahead of the new European guidelines.
The activity carried out by El Corte Inglés generates 50 different waste fractions, which are correctly separated for their assessment. This waste is generated both by the business itself and customer households. These include the management of various categories: vegetable oils, cardboard, various types of plastics, electrical appliances and household appliances. Products that will be destined for reuse, recovery or recycling
The actions introduced for this purpose include reorganising logistics routes and optimising vehicle loads, thus, reducing CO2 emissions; As well as donations of goods and food surplus to different companies and social entities, such as Food Banks, Cocina Económica, Cáritas, Serín Animal Shelter and the RETO Centre, among others, and thus guarantee the circular economy.
With these measures, El Corte Inglés in Asturias estimates it has been possible to prevent an amount of waste equivalent to that generated in one day by 200,000 people being taken to landfill and thus reduce the environmental impact of disposing of such waste.
In order to achieve this goal, the company has collaborated with a specialist consultancy and has obtained the commitment and involvement of its employees who, in just a few months, have adapted centres and warehouses to accommodate a system that is environmentally sustainable in order to minimise the impact of their activities and obtain Zero Waste certification.
In the centres where this system has been implemented, it will be possible to donate more than 325 tonnes to Food Banks or other NGOs, or to recover 221 tonnes of organic waste as compost in a year. Furthermore, almost 272 tonnes of wood has been delivered to local processing companies so it can be reused as a raw material and around 2,000 tonnes of waste from electric and electronic devices has been processed so it can be reused, recovered or recycled.
The project carried out is one more step within the Group's environment strategy, with Zero Waste being one of its goals. All of these actions are part of El Corte Inglés' commitment to society and the environment and demonstrate that the company's ethos is closely aligned with people's concerns.