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Green Retailing

  • By: Diane M. Martin & John W. Schouten
  • In: Green Business: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Nevin Cohen & Paul Robbins
  • Subject:Sustainability, Environmental Policy & Law (general)

Having been described as the “big middle” of the value chain between producers and final consumers, retailing enjoys a powerful position from which to influence sustainability in two directions: backward up the supply chain and forward to customers and postcon-sumer processes. Green retailing is driven by ambitious goals, such as the following:

  • Achieving zero waste in all its functions and facilities
  • Using only renewable energy
  • Carrying only products that are socially and environmentally sustainable
  • Educating and facilitating customers in green consumption and postconsumption behaviors

Few, if any, retailers are truly green. Currently, however, retailing is undergoing a significant and sustained process of greening, working steadily and systematically toward the above goals. The impetus for change often begins with public relations concerns. Large, successful, and highly visible retailers, such as Wal-Mart ...

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