Aldi Groceries Does Right by the Bees by Banning all Pesticide-Laden Produce and Expanding Organic Alternatives
According to Your News Wire, the German supermarket chain has also decided to remove various artificial ingredients from its products, expand its gluten-free range, and step up its game regarding organic food. It seems that Aldi is doing something that many other major retailers are as yet failing to do – listening to the needs and wants of its customers.
Importance of bees
Bees play a crucial role in keeping the planet alive, and yet bee populations are at risk of collapse. Bees are responsible for the pollination of approximately one third of U.S. crops, as reported by Awaresy, including produce like almonds, peaches, apples, pears, cucumbers and strawberries – to name but a few.
Globally, honeybees pollinate almost 75 percent of all plant species directly used for human food, and “the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations (UN) estimates that out of around 100 crop species, which provide 90% of the world’s food, some 71 are bee-pollinated,” as reported by Awaresy.
Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) is a phenomenon that “sees bees getting confused and not returning to their hives or simply dying off in the wild.” According to Awaresy, each winter for nearly a decade, an average of 31 percent of bee colonies have collapsed – and in 2015 this number reached a catastrophic 42 percent.
Manufacturers claim that these insecticides are completely harmless to species other than the pests they are designed to target, but they are now known to be a major cause of the decline of bees and other critical pollinators, according to GM Watch. When bees, butterflies, beetles and other pollinators feed from the flowers of crops that have been sprayed with these highly toxic pesticides, they absorb enough of the chemical to compromise their survival.
Aldi made an announcement on January 1st 2016 that eight pesticides which are known to be toxic to bees would no longer be permitted for use on their fruit and vegetable produce, according to Your News Wire. This marks an important step for the food industry as a whole, with the chain listening to the concerns of its consumers, and taking measures to make sure its products are sourced in an environmentally and ethically conscious way.
Aldi also has plans to expand its selection of fresh and organic meat, including its popular brand of “Never Any!” meats that contain no added antibiotics, no added hormones, no animal by-products and no other nasty additives.
Your News Wire also reports that Aldi’s “SimplyNature” and gluten-free lines are also expanding, showing that the company is broadening its organic produce and giving the food giant the competitive edge when it comes to other chains like Whole Foods and Kroger. Hopefully more food giants will follow in Aldi’s footsteps.