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Bimbo Canada start using compostable bag clips for all bread products

A strand of compostable bread clips comes out of a machine
A strand of compostable cardboard bread clips

Bimbo Canada has started transitioning from using plastic bread bag tags to using compostable, cardboard bread bag clips on all bread products including Dempster's, Villaggio, POM, Bon Matin, Ben's, and Stonemill. This change will begin immediately and is anticipated to be completed by June 2022. Once complete, it will reduce the company's single-use plastic by approximately 200 metric tonnes annually.

"It's important we lead change and be responsible stewards of the environment and the communities that we live and work in, by delivering results," said Joe McCarthy, Bimbo Canada president. "This announcement helps us fulfill our commitment to Nourish A Better World through sustainable business practices and helps us to inspire others to do the same. All changes, big or small, make an impact."

To make the change, Bimbo Canada has partnered with KLR Systems, a Canadian company based in Quebec. The company received the Food Innovation award from the Quebec Food Processing Council last year for the cardboard bread tag innovation.

"We developed this product knowing some small plastics, like bread tags, cannot always be recycled," said Audrey Gagnon, General Manager of KLR Systems. "Our goal for this innovation was to leverage local renewable resources that benefit the environment while also creating a product that consumers were familiar with using. We are excited to work with Bimbo Canada on this initiative to bring more sustainable options to people across the country."

The cardboard bread tags are made from 100 percent recycled cardboard and are compostable in municipal systems across Canada with curbside organics pickup or local drop-off. They have been tested over repeated use cycles at room, refrigerator, and freezer temperatures to ensure the clips keep products fresh. The bread clips biodegrade in 84 days.

The clips have been certified by the Compost Manufacturing Alliance and have also been certified compostable in municipal settings by BNQ (Bureau de normalisation du Québec), a member of the National Standards System (NSS). The cardboard clips can be composted in municipal composting programs with curbside organics pickup or local drop-off. Canadians should check with their local waste management authority as these programs may not be available in their area. For areas without municipal composting programs, consumers are encouraged to place the clips inside a larger paper-based product in their recycling bin to aid in the sorting process.

This initiative brings Bimbo Canada one step closer to achieving its 2025 sustainability goal of having 100 percent of its packaging support a circular economy through being recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable. Last year, the company joined the Canada Plastics Pact and signed two virtual power purchase agreements to offset 100 percent of its electricity consumption once fully operational in December, 2022.

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