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Fred Meyer customers brought back reusable bags to the check stand 2.5 million more times in 2007 than they did in 2006, according to usage data gathered at store registers by the chain.
As a result, Fred Meyer stores ordered 3.5 million fewer plastic bags in 2007 than in 2006, equaling about 36,000 pounds or 18 tons of plastic bags, according to press reports, which said one Fred Meyer reusable grocery bag saves up to three standard plastic bags.
Additional Fred Meyer recycle programs for 2007 resulted in 45,000 tons of loose cardboard recycled; 35 tons of plastic from grocery bags and plastic wrap were recycled and used in making park benches and other lumber-replacement products; and five million pounds of food, that would otherwise be sent to a landfill, were donated to local food banks, including meat, dairy and produce items.
The Portland-based division of The Kroger Co. operates some 140 stores in Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Idaho and Utah.