Statement: Target’s new plastic packaging goal is a step in the right direction

Media Contacts

Announcement reflects continuing corporate trend toward reducing virgin plastic

Environment America

DENVER – The Fortune 50 retailer Target announced a new goal Tuesday to reduce its use of virgin plastic 20 percent by 2025 across its own brand frequency products. It is part of a new sustainability strategy called Target Forward and covers such key categories as household cleaning, personal care and beauty.

Corporate commitments promising virgin plastic reduction have become increasingly common, with major companies such as Coca-Cola, Mattel, PepsiCo and Walmart making pledges in the last year. That said, to date, many goals have not been met yet.

In response, Environment America and PIRG experts issued the following statements.

Steve Blackledge, Environment America senior conservation director, said:
 “America’s wildlife, from whales and sea turtles to bird species everywhere, are choking on plastic and starving as the waste fills their bellies. Nothing we use for a few minutes should cause this irreparable damage. We can do better and it’s good to see Target take an important step forward. Now a ‘target’ is on their back, and we look forward to their realizing this commitment.”

Alex Truelove, PIRG zero waste director, said: 
“Target’s pledge to reduce virgin plastic use will almost certainly rely on increasing recycled content. Less new plastic being produced and less of it piling up in landfills are steps toward a less wasteful future, and we applaud that. However, major companies also need to stop designing their products to be disposable and embrace reuse and refill solutions. Until then, their products will continue to pollute.”