Protesters Urge Grocery Chain to Remove Chemicals from its Products

Protesters Urge Grocery Chain to Remove Chemicals from its Products

On Friday afternoon, people gathered outside of the South Burlington Shaw’s to protest the company’s use of chemicals.

 Advocates with the Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG) say that lead, bromine and other chemicals are found in products sold at grocery giant.

This includes the Shaw’s own Signature brand products.

Johanna De Graffenried, an environmental advocated with VPIRG, says "There over 85 thousands unregulated and largely untested chemicals that are used every day in children’s product and food packaging in body lotion and then there sold right on the shelves in the store here at Shaw's and across the state."

In a statement to Local 22/ Local 44 Shaw’s defends the company’s use of the chemicals saying:

Our Commitment to Safety

Food safety is a priority of the highest level at Shaw’s. We rely on sound science and require all suppliers to follow Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations regarding food ingredients and packaging materials. The group protesting today seeks changes that have not been endorsed by the FDA or USDA or widely adopted by the food manufacturing community.

We work with suppliers on an ongoing basis to ensure product safety and enhance packaging. For example, we have also switched to BPA-free containers for products commonly used by infants, including baby bottles and sippy cups. The transition happened in all stores, not just those where this specific BPA-free packaging is mandated by law. BPA-free packaging alternatives are being researched within our company and the entire retail food industry.

For the last two years, Albertsons Companies and its Shaw’s stores were awarded the EPA’s Safer Choice Retail Partner of the Year Award, which recognizes companies that promote Safer Choice-rated products that are safer for human health and the environment.

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