- Despite substantial public attention to toxic indirect food additives, including PFAS, phthalates, and bisphenols, and to toxic chemicals in other products, there is no indication that Publix has made any significant public-facing commitments to address the safety of chemicals used in the products it sells, including any indirect food additives that may be in food contact materials. Publix could receive credit for featuring the GreenWise line of food and non-food products from which certain chemicals are banned if the company can demonstrate it includes a ban on the use of these chemicals in food processing.
Recommendations for Publix
- Publix can make progress by developing a public written safer chemicals policy, developing and enforcing a public beyond restricted substance list (BRSL), and setting public quantifiable goals with clear timelines for reducing and eliminating chemicals of high concern (CHCs).
- We urge the company to eliminate and safely replace any toxic indirect food additives that may be in food contact materials, with special attention to any bisphenols and per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) that may be in food packaging and other food contact materials as well as any phthalates that may be in food and food contact materials in its supply chain. The company should also eliminate plastics of environmental health concern (PEHCs) from its product and packaging materials. Publix should publicly disclose the alternatives used to replace CHCs after eliminating them.
- The company should become a signatory to the Chemical Footprint Project and pilot it with key private label suppliers.
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How does Publix compare to its competitors?
Analysis of Publix
Policy:Adopted a retailer safer chemicals policy
Oversight: Established management responsibilities and incentives
Accountability: Ensures supply chain accountability
Disclosure: Requires suppliers to report use of chemicals in products to retailer
Action: Reduced or eliminated chemicals of high concern (CHCs) or plastics of environmental health concern (PEHCs) within the last three years
Safer Alternatives: Evaluates safer alternatives, avoids regrettable substitutes
Transparency: Demonstrates a commitment to transparency and public disclosure
Chemical Footprint: Evaluates its chemical footprint
Third-party Standards: Promotes credible third-party standards for safer products
Joint Announcement: Public commitment demonstrated through joint announcement
Continuous Improvement: Shows continuous improvement by steadily expanding safer chemicals policy
Collaboration: Actively participates in collaborative process to promote safer chemicals
Impact Investment: Investing financial resources into independent research into safer alternatives and/or green chemistry solutions