Case study

ALDI: 100% recycled Belgian PE bin bags


At a time of increasing awareness of the environment, consumers are looking for brands that not only supply quality products but also demonstrate a commitment to sustainable development. The European supermarket chain ALDI has made its mark as an interesting example in this respect. Placing the emphasis on sustainable resource management has led to the creation of innovative solutions that address environmental concerns and are in line with ALDI’s basic values: simplicity, reliability and responsibility. One of ALDI’s key areas of innovation is its sustainable approach to products, in particular via its 100% recycled bin bags.

‘Film-to-film’ recycling

ALDI’s commitment to circular waste management is reflected in its bin bags made entirely of Belgian r-PE supplied by ecoo, an ultramodern recycling centre in Beringen. ecoo is Belgium’s first recycling plant to specialise in recycling polyethylene (PE) film for use as blown film, packaging film and, in this case, bin bags. The Blue Bag plays a key role in this initiative as it allows the collection of 25,000 tonnes of household PE film packaging delivered directly to ecoo. The PE fraction includes the plastic surrounding bottle multipacks, salad bags and the blue bag itself.

ecoo Beringen uses three state-of-the-art mechanical recycling lines, a real-time monitoring system based on artificial intelligence and a digital platform with quality control for the international standardisation of r-LDPE (recycled low-density polyethylene).

Using locally sourced recycled materials allows ALDI to reduce its environmental footprint and supports the circular economy. Two versions of these environmentally friendly bin bags are available:

  1. Folia® 60L bin bags with fastening strip 18 pcs, 30 microns
  2. Folia® 100L bin bags with drawstring 10 pcs, 40 microns

These bin bags are the result of two clear undertakings. Firstly, thanks to a recycling contract with ecoo, high-quality recycled materials are available locally for the local production industry. Secondly, ALDI has deliberately opted to use Belgian recycled material. So the circle is complete: the packaging collected door to door in Belgium returns to the Belgian market in the form of bin bags made entirely of recycled material.

A commitment to sustainable, local products

By introducing circular bin bags made entirely of Belgian r-PE, ALDI is demonstrating a forward-thinking commitment to sustainability. Moreover, many other ALDI products use recycled materials. These include the plastic containers for fresh poultry, the bottles for culinary cream and fresh orange juice and the jars for fresh soup, all made using 100% recycled r-PET. Incorporating recycled materials in everyday products such as bin bags allows ALDI not only to reduce its environmental impact but also to set an example for the distribution industry.

ALDI has set ambition goals for 2025, aiming for 100% recyclable private label packaging and a minimum of 30% recycled materials in plastic packaging. An average of 13% recycled plastic is currently incorporated into the packaging of ALDI’s own brand products. Moreover, since 2020 ALDI has succeeded in reducing the weight of its packaging by 8.4% (calculated on the packaging volume of its permanent range).