At a Glance


Retail and Apparel

Project Types

Goals/Targets, Supply Chain




Shenzhen, Guangdong


Xue Zhang formulated responsible palm oil and plastic packaging sourcing strategies for Walmart, driving the achievement of its sustainability objectives.


As one of the world's largest retail companies, Walmart has prioritized efforts to enhance the sustainability of products and products supply chain and reducing plastic waste. During the fellowship, Zhang Xue worked on the following projects:

  • Procuring stricter RSPO-certified palm oil
  • Boosting recycled PET content in private-label packaging


To bolster Walmart and its suppliers sourcing from RSPO Mass Balance-certified palm oil to segregated, Zhang Xue researched four RSPO certification levels (IP, SG, MB, BC) along with their global production and distribution, confirmed RSPO-SG palm oil's adequacy for Walmart's needs. She scrutinized the performances of 20 palm oil traders, ultimately identifying potential partners. Cost and premium analyses of the certification fortified her persuasion for wider RSPO certification adoption within the value chain. Finally, she proposed a series of more sustainable procurement strategies.

To advance the integration of recycled content in Walmart's packaging, Zhang Xue researched the PET plastic recycling industry's supply chain, market dynamics, and professional certifications. She clarified the existing landscape of the rPET market and identified prospective partners.

Potential Impact

Zhang Xue's research advances Walmart's sustainable sourcing practices, fostering collaboration, informed decision-making, and reduced environmental impact. These efforts position Walmart as an industry leader, enhancing its reputation and aligning with long-term sustainability goals.

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