Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) continued their fifth annual Retail
Sustainability Conference today, opening with Harvard University Professor
Rebecca Henderson, who discussed challenges that exist when companies attempt
transformative change. Rebecca’s inspirational session shed light on overcoming
the obstacles and was followed by one of the signature elements of RILA’s
conference - roundtable sessions designed as deep-dives into the issues
critical to retail operations and compliance.
from Johnson & Johnson, Wal-Mart, and Best Buy led a discussion on the
growing trend of including sustainability information on product scorecards and
product labels. Another session focused on trends towards transparency in
sourcing and highlighted the critical issues of conflict minerals. The
environmental compliance roundtable allowed for discussions on hazardous waste,
food waste, e-waste, and reverse logistics. “Sitting Down with Developers”
offered tips on how real estate professionals, landlords, and retailers can
identify opportunities for energy and waste reduction within their stores.
day concluded with top merchandising, marketing, and real estate executives
from REI, Target, and Costco, respectively, who offered insight on how sustainability-focused
leaders can best communicate value through sustainable practices. These leading
executives discussed their experiences engaging their teams for
organization-wide collaboration on sustainability efforts and the best ways to
gain support at all levels of the retail chain.
“Retail sustainability initiatives are rapidly evolving,” said
Adam Siegel, vice president of sustainability and retail operations for RILA. “We are delighted to provide a wide
range of content for this year’s event and look forward to addressing the most
pressing issues and opportunities.”
is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail
companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers,
and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in
annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores,
manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.