Outlined as its Sustainable Packaging Goals, the retailer is aiming to make significant progress by 2020/2022

Outlined as its Sustainable Packaging Goals, the retailer is aiming to make significant progress by 2020/2022

Target Corp is stepping up its commitment to responsible sourcing with a pledge to provide sustainable packaging, including promises to eliminate expanded polystyrene and to source from sustainably managed forests.

Outlined as its Sustainable Packaging Goals, the retailer is aiming to make significant progress by 2020/2022, and plans to share resources to provide a transparent view of its work with updates each year in its Corporate Social Responsibility Report.

"We know our guests pay attention to packaging and its impact on the environment," explains Jennifer Silberman, Target's chief sustainability officer. "When we provide them with thoughtfully designed, environmentally friendly packaging, we're able to help them take another step toward sustainable living."

The company is building on its first packaging goal, launched back in 2013, which saw it develop 160 enhanced recyclable packaging designs that used fewer materials and more recycled content.

Now, Target says it is "thinking on a broader scale" and has unveiled five new goals it says reflect guests' expectations, business priorities, challenges the industry is facing today, and areas where it can drive the most change.

Target's Sustainable Packaging Goals are as follows:

  • Work to eliminate expanded polystyrene from its owned brand packaging by 2022
  • Source all owned brand paper-based packaging from sustainability managed forests by 2022
  • Add the How2Recycle label to al owned brand packaging by 2020 (where space allows)
  • Support the Recycling Partnership's mission to improve how more than 25% of the US population recycles by 2020
  • Create more demand for recycled packaging by creating three new end markets for recycled materials by 2020

"With the power of Target's team and our scale as one of the country's largest retailers, we hope to be a catalyst for change across the industry—aiming for the day when all packaging will be recyclable, and leading the way to a packaging-waste-free world," adds Silberman.

The retailer's Sustainable Packaging Goals follow a pledge Target said earlier this year would be one of the "most comprehensive in the US retail industry", designed to drive transparency, proactive chemical management and innovation across all of its owned and national brand consumer products, and operations.

Target driving transparency with first chemical goals

Meanwhile, the company recently unveiled the first design elements of its store overhaul plans - including elevated, cross-merchandise apparel displays - as part of its strategy to create a smart network, with stores, digital channels and supply chain all working cohesively.

Target unveils "ambitious" store re-design plans