Food in stores

Food Waste

Food waste has a tremendous impact on our environment. Worldwide, it contributes to the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions that road transportation does. The ALDI SOUTH Group has set ambitious goals to reduce food waste, so that we can improve food security, address climate change, and protect our natural environment.

Why food waste matters

Worldwide, humans throw away the equivalent of 23 million fully loaded 40-tonne trucks of food waste each year.  Unused food ends up in landfills, incinerators, down the drain, or rotting in fields. According to the UNEP Food Waste Index Report, the average person throws away 47kg of food per year, and this figure applies to individuals who live in both lower-middle income to high-income countries. Given that nearly 30% of the world’s population have limited or uncertain access to nutritious food, we all have much to do about food waste.

Food waste happens at all stages within our food systems, from farm to fork. Reducing food waste is key to transforming our global food systems and producers, suppliers, retailers, and consumers all have a part to play. At the ALDI SOUTH Group, we have set a target to halve our operational food waste by 2030.

The environmental impact of food waste

When we waste food, we waste more than the nutritious value. It takes a lot of resources to grow, process, sort, package, transport, sell, cook, and consume food. The later in the process the food is wasted, the more the energy and natural resources are depleted.

By limiting food waste, we can improve food security, address climate change, reduce our monthly food bill and protect our natural environment.

Food waste is generated across the ALDI SOUTH Group’s supply chains. We are focusing our actions on internal operations and business practices because this is where we can have the most significant and immediate impact.

Food waste in our supply chains

Producer Level & Supply Chain

None of our products contain any raw materials derived from exotic or endangered animal species. Our health and beauty products, detergents and cleaners are free from animal testing.

ALDI Stores & Operations

Our operational waste amounts to approximately 149,000 tonnes per year, that is 22 delivery trucks per day.
We are working to limit food waste in our operations by reducing in-store waste, delayed deliveries and overstocking.


Excessive purchasing and lack of knowledge on freshness are the main drivers of household waste.
Whilst we have little control over household food waste, we can ensure that our product safety labelling helps our customers to make informed decisions.

What is ALDI doing about food waste?

Given that food waste is largely generated outside of our own operations, we also try to understand how we can help our suppliers to reduce and redistribute food waste in the supply chain through better forecasting, accepting different sizes and types of fruits and vegetables and helping to use any over production of products.

ALDI has joined the Consumer Goods Forum Food Waste Coalition of Action along with other major retailers. The main goal of this collaboration is to launch consumer-focused campaigns, benchmark our progress, share knowledge, and trial new technologies. We are also exploring cost-effective measures that enable and encourage our customers to reduce their household food waste.

Saving fruits and vegetables

Whilst not all food waste can be avoided, we try to reduce it to the absolute minimum. We have set goals to improve our ordering and planning processes to reduce food surpluses. Customers can benefit from discounted products approaching their expiration or use-by dates, and we donate products to our extended networks of charity partners. We are changing mindsets within our German and UK markets, as we offer “Krumme Dinger” (crooked things) and “Wonky Vegetables” – These are perfectly good foods that might not look flawless but are tasty and nutritious. Furthermore, we aim to donate as much as possible and we are also working on transforming food waste into animal and insect feed, as well as composting and generating biogas from food waste.

Our goal:

Our global goal is to halve Food Waste across our own operations and minimise the share of Food Waste that is incinerated or landfilled.

Setting the standards: ALDI UK

In 2023, ALDI UK publicly announced an impressive 57% reduction in food waste, setting a benchmark for our global initiatives. Their new goal is to achieve a 90% reduction in operational food waste. ALDI UK was also the first market to partner with Too Good To Go, a customer service that connects customers to stores that have surplus still-good-for-consumption food. In Ireland over 100 million meals were saved from going to waste in 2023. The service is also available to our Austrian customers.

ALDI UK, Ireland and Austria have partnered with Too Good To Go  to bring unsold food to their customers at a reduced price. Our surplus foods that are still perfectly good, but at risk of being wasted, is put together in a “Surprise Bag” which customers can purchase using the Too Good To Go app.

ALDI launches "Rettenswert" brand in Austria


There are several reasons for food waste in the supply chain, including overproduction due to yield changes and planning, aesthetic, and size requirements. Unfortunately, many of these surpluses are hard for our suppliers to market or donate. HOFER has developed the brand “Rettenswert” to repurpose surplus products and upcycle them into something more valuable and delicious. The brand was trialled in our Austrian stores in 2022 and has already introduced a range of products in 2023.

Examples of the products include pumpkin pesto made from imperfect pumpkins sourced directly from the farm, antipasti made from inconsistently sliced zucchinis, chutney, fruit jams, and vegetable spreads. One of their spreads is made from carrots that were damaged during the washing process after harvest. In 2023, Austria experienced a tremendous surplus of seasonal tomatoes, which led to the creation of the Rettenswert ketchup. It is the only ketchup in Austria that is 100% grown and produced locally.