Wal-Mart Canada commits to making a difference in its second Corporate Social Responsibility Report

    Company's most transparent report to-date highlights progress on
    environmental sustainability, ethical sourcing, community involvement and
    investment and people

    MISSISSAUGA, ON, Sept. 23 /CNW/ - Wal-Mart Canada today released its
second Corporate Social Responsibility Report (CSR Report), highlighting the
company's commitment to more transparency and to putting its social
responsibility action into words. The CSR Report covers fiscal year 2007 and
outlines areas of interest to the company's many stakeholders including
environmental sustainability, ethical sourcing, community involvement and
investment and people.
    "There's a Wal-Mart people see every day - a company saving people money
so they can live better - and a Wal-Mart with which they may be less
familiar," said David Cheesewright, President and CEO of Wal-Mart Canada. "Our
CSR Report outlines the less familiar story of a company making positive
strides in environmental sustainability, community involvement and investment,
global sourcing and as an employer."
    For the first time, and with the help of the non-profit CSR consultancy
Canadian Business for Social Responsibility (CBSR), Wal-Mart Canada has
included key performance indicators (KPIs) in its CSR Report. KPIs will help
the company provide greater transparency to stakeholders and will allow it to
continually measure, observe and analyze CSR performance.
    In another first, Wal-Mart Canada initiated an open and proactive
dialogue with a range of external stakeholders as it developed the report,
ranging from environmental groups to labour watchdogs, to gain insight on how
the company could improve its performance and be more transparent with its
    "We've opened ourselves to review by external stakeholders and even
critics because, while we continue to make progress on our CSR objectives, we
realize we can improve and benefit from feedback covering many perspectives,"
added Cheesewright.
    Highlights of Wal-Mart Canada's 2007 corporate social responsibility
report include:

    Wal-Mart Canada is aggressively pursuing its long-term sustainability
goals: to be supplied by 100 per cent renewable energy; to produce zero waste;
and to sell merchandise that sustains resources and the environment.
    The company made several notable strides in 2007 including the expansion
of its waste diversion program to include additional types of plastics. As a
result of Wal-Mart Canada's multi-stream recycling program, the company was
able to divert more than 100,000,000 kilograms of waste from landfill.
    Given that 92 per cent of the company's waste is the result of product
packaging, Wal-Mart Canada established new criteria to assess suppliers and
supply chain partners on the basis of their environmental efforts, impact and
improvement. In addition, suppliers were invited to participate in two
sustainable packaging expos, in conjunction with the Packaging Association of
Canada, where they were educated on new sustainable packaging materials,
technologies, designs and alternatives. Wal-Mart Canada is on the verge of
rolling out its new packaging scorecard, a roadmap designed to help suppliers
reduce their individual packaging.
    At the store level, the company installed the latest high-efficiency
heating, ventilation, air conditioning, insulation and lighting systems in new
prototype stores, making them 20 to 30 per cent more energy efficient than the
Canadian average for non-food retail outlets. Wal-Mart Canada also introduced
more than 300 environmentally preferable products to its customers.

    Global Sourcing
    Wal-Mart has one of the most active ethical sourcing programs in the
retail industry. Though the company does not own its own factories, it ensures
suppliers comply with rigorous ethical sourcing standards through training and
auditing processes.
    In 2007, Wal-Mart's Ethical Standards auditors conducted a total of 1,594
audits on 1,062 factories (that provide products both directly and indirectly
to Wal-Mart Canada) in an ongoing effort to bring suppliers into compliance
with the highest ethical sourcing standards.
    In 2007, the company also added new environmental criteria to its
supplier standards, covering waste identification, handling and disposal,
wastewater treatment and discharge of air emissions, as well as banned

    Despite a challenging economy, Wal-Mart Canada kept associate wages above
minimum wage in all provinces and paid a record $45.4 million in bonuses to
eligible hourly associates - an average bonus of $1,000 per eligible
    Wal-Mart Canada introduced a new diversity program to promote a stronger
culture of inclusion and introduced several initiatives to promote women into
leadership roles. One of the latter programs is a Women in Leadership Group,
made up of the company's 35 most senior women, who are helping drive several
key initiatives aimed at promoting women into leadership roles.
    The company was listed among the nine best employers in Canada for
Canadian age 50-plus by the Workplace Institute. The only retailer on the
list, the company was recognized for finding interesting and effective ways to
engage and retain older workers, including consulting opportunities, special
projects and mentorships.

    Community Investment and Involvement
    One of the most significant ways in which Wal-Mart Canada contributes to
Canada is through economic opportunities for people, businesses and
    In 2007, Wal-Mart Canada created nearly 5,000 news jobs and paid more
than $11 billion to 6,311 Canadian businesses. The company raised and donated
more than $18 million for local charities, 26 per cent more than in 2006.
Children's Miracle Network, Breakfast Clubs of Canada, the Canadian Red Cross,
the Juno Beach Centre and the Salvation Army were just a few of the many
organizations that received charitable donations from Wal-Mart Canada.
    Through the Wal-Mart Canada scholarships program, the company awarded 81
scholarships, valued at $115,000 in total, to Canadian students heading to
college or university.
    "In order to ensure the continued success of our business for tomorrow,
we recognize the need to manage our social, environmental and ethical
performance to the same extent that we manage our financial performance,"
added Cheesewright. "That change in mindset is continually top-of-mind in how
we do business and at all levels of the company."
    Wal-Mart Canada's 2007 Corporate Social Responsibility Report is
available online at

    About Wal-Mart Canada

    Headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, Wal-Mart Canada operates 310
retail outlets nationwide. The company serves more than one million Canadians
each day and is one of the country's largest employers with more than 77,000
Canadian associates.

For further information:

For further information: Karin Campbell, corporate affairs, Wal-Mart
Canada, (905) 821-2111 x 4042

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