Walmart U.S. announced new pollinator commitments that aim to drive pollinator-friendly practices throughout its supply chain. The pledges represent ‘the largest pollinator health effort from a U.S. grocery retailer to-date,” according to the company. Walmart is committing to source 100% of the fresh produce and floral sold in-store from suppliers that adopt Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices, as verified by a third-party certifier, by 2025. “We are also encouraging fresh produce suppliers to phase out use of chlorpyrifos and nitroguanidine neonicotinoids pesticides (where applicable unless mandated otherwise by law), avoid replacing them with other products with a level I bee precaution rating and assess and report annual progress, according to Martin Mundo, SVP, General Merchandise Manager, Produce and Global Produce Sourcing, Walmart U.S., in a blog post. Walmart will encourage fresh produce suppliers to protect, restore or establish pollinator habitats by 2025 on at least 3% of land they own, operate and also provide annual progress reports. The retailer said it would continue to avoid selling invasive plant species and work with local organizations to protect, restore or establish pollinator habitats in major pollinator migration corridors. In addition, Walmart partnered with developers to establish pollinator habitats arounds solar farms and granted funding to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability to leverage citizen science data to monitor pollinators more cost-effectively. Starting this month, plants that attract pollinators will feature special tags to help Walmart customers grow their own pollinator gardens.
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