Wal-Mart's goals, announced by CEO Doug McMillon, follow a plan set in 2005 as the company sought to deflect criticism of its practices and burnish its image. Wal-Mart has extended its effort since then into its supply chain, which because of its size - more than 10,000 stores globally - gives it outsized influence on the overall industry.
The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer is under pressure from consumers, especially millennials, who want environmentally friendly items. Wal-Mart is looking at technology that will let shoppers scan food to learn its origins and other information, beyond just tagging products with "green labels."
Kathleen McLaughlin, a Wal-Mart senior vice president, said she couldn't estimate how much the programs will save or cost. While they have an impact on society, they overall also make good business sense, she said.
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