Scarborough-based Hannaford Supermarkets and its parent company, Ahold Delhaize, are among a group of retailers to which a Portland-based environmental health group has assigned failing grades, saying they lack policies for ensuring chemical safety in their products.

The Environmental Health Strategy Center’s second annual “Who’s Minding the Store? – A Report Card on Retailer Actions to Eliminate Toxic Chemicals” said Hannaford was among nine retailers that received “F” grades for failing to publicly announce basic safer-chemical policies to ensure the chemical safety of their products and supply chain.

Hannaford spokesman Eric Blom responded via email to the report card by simply saying, “We are confident in the quality of our products.” The grocery chain has long been known for promoting sustainability in its corporate practices.

The other retailers receiving “F” grades were Ace Hardware, Dollar General, Kohl’s, Office Depot, Sally Beauty, T.J. Maxx owner TJX, Toys “R” Us/Babies “R” Us and Trader Joe’s.

The Environmental Health Strategy Center is a 15-year-old nonprofit organization that focuses on the use of safer chemicals to promote human health in Maine and nationally. It partnered on the national report card with the Washington, D.C.-based environmental health group, Safer Chemicals Healthy Families.

In all, the report card assigned grades to 30 of the largest U.S. retailers. The group said Hannaford parent Ahold Delhaize was one of eight retailers to score zero points, with no significant public commitments to address the safety of chemicals used in the products it sells or in its private brands.

“This is in sharp contrast to other environmental and social responsibility concerns, where Ahold Delhaize has well-documented commitments and policies, including publicly reported metrics and clear pathways of executive oversight,” it said.

The center said Ahold Delhaize can make progress by developing a public, written safer-chemicals policy, setting clear goals and timelines for reducing and eliminating chemicals of high concern, and eliminating and safely substituting chemicals such as BPA and phthalates in its food packaging.

Apple, Wal-Mart Stores, CVS Health, IKEA, Whole Foods Market and Target received the highest grades, scoring a “B+” or above.

A full list of retailers and their grades, along with an explanation of the study’s methodology, can be found at RetailerReportCard.com.

J. Craig Anderson can be contacted at 791-6390 or at:

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