Safeway grocery chain to offer biodiesel at Seattle location

By | April 25, 2007
Safeway Inc. recently announced that it will be test-marketing a B20 blend of biodiesel in a west Seattle store. The move is part of the company's open-ended commitment to advance products and services that help its customers lead healthier lives.

"We've been looking at [biodiesel] for a long time," said Cherie Myers, director of public and government affairs. "We have customers who are interested in being greener, [and Safeway] has been part of environmental changes since [the beginning] of our company."

If successful, Safeway may consider adding biodiesel to other locations in the surrounding communities of Ballard and Roosevelt, Wash. The test is scheduled to last approximately six months.

Myers sees the full adoption of biodiesel as just one part of Safeway's current and future commitment to renewable energy, which includes wind energy that powers the stations. Also, in 2005, Safeway diverted more than a billion pounds of recyclables from waste and is one of the nation's largest renewable energy buyers. "Our belief is it is going to be positive," Myers said of the company's environmental awareness

Safeway isn't the only convenience store chain that is embracing biodiesel. In South Carolina, Spinx Company Inc., which operates more than 70 stores, has 35 public pumps offering B20 blends. Greenville, S.C., alone is home to 13 biodiesel pumps, which makes the renewable fuel easy to find. "We are very proud to be able to work with our state and local governments to bring environmentally friendly fuels such as biodiesel to the Upstate," said Stewart Spinx, founder and CEO. The company's customers have also supported the decision, he said.

In Idaho, Stinker Stores, which operates 11 Treasure Valley convenience stores, began offering B10 in 2006. Its decision was based on the company's successful sales of 10 percent ethanol blends that it had offered for 25 years.

In Austin, Texas, 19 Shell stations have begun carrying B20, giving the city the highest availability in the nation.
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