REWE Group Sustainability Report 2017


GRI 306: Effluents and WasteManagement Approach

In dealing with waste and reusable materials, REWE Group and its waste-disposal partners systematically apply the principle of recycling. In particular, the reusable material found in logistics is sorted to the greatest extent possible and can thus be optimally provided for further use.

This commitment is especially reflected in the high recycling percentage for non-hazardous waste that can be reused to a large degree.

In 2008, this rate was more than 90 per cent. Since 2012, it has remained relatively constant at more than 95 per cent. Nearly all paper, cardboard and boxes are recycled. This group makes up the largest share of all waste at 45 per cent. It is an important raw material for the paper industry, as new paper and cardboard can be produced from the recycled fibres. A large amount of plastics, metals, glass and store rubbish is recycled as well. Organic waste produced in food stores is transported to biogas units where it is converted into electricity and heat.

In the area of food, REWE Group strives to keep the percentage of losses to a minimum. State-of-the-art forecasting systems and automated order processes are combined with short transport distances and seamless refrigeration to create a needs-driven supply system for stores. As a result, the percentage of unsold goods can be kept at a minimum. A key role in estimating need is the commercial experience of employees. REWE Group regularly provides training to them in this area.

Apart from the waste, effluents are also produced by the business activities of REWE Group. The company does not introduce its effluents directly into waterways. Instead, it directs the effluents into normal public and private wastewater systems at its business locations.

GRI 306-2: Waste by type and disposal method

The amount of non-hazardous waste in the company group in Germany and Austria totalled about 650,600 tonnes in 2017. At 1,567 tonnes, hazardous waste, in particular certain types of used electric equipment, oils, vehicle batteries and fluorescent lamps, made up only a small portion of overall waste in 2017. Compared with non-hazardous waste, the amount of hazardous waste totalled significantly less than 1 per cent.

Non-hazardous waste – absolute volume (tonnes)
2015 2016 2017
Absolute volume (tonnes) 622,858.75 637,089.38 650,610.35
Non-hazardous waste – specific volume per square metre of sales area (kg/m²)
2015 2016 2017
Specific waste volume (kg/m²) 84.78 87.65 88.39
Non-hazardous waste – absolute volume (tonnes)
Waste for recycling 11.4%
Organic 18.8%
PCB (Paper and cardboard/boxes) 44.6%
Plastics 13.1%
Residual waste 5.4%
Other (eg. Wood, metals, construction waste) 6.6%
Hazardous waste – absolute volume (tonnes)
2015 2016 2017
Absolute volume (tonnes) 1453 1357 1567

Scope: Companies of REWE Group in Germany and Austria excluding partner retailers. Units that left REWE Group during the reporting period were excluded: Rothermel.

More topics:

GRI 302


GRI 303


GRI 305

Climate Protection


Green Building