News | Published September 13 2019

Sainsbury’s vows to cut plastic use in half by 2025

The supermarket Sainsbury’s has joined efforts to reduce their packaging waste, with the chain pledging to halve the amount of plastic it uses by 2025.

In order to achieve these goals, it said that customers must be prepared to change their behaviour. 

Reducing plastic packaging will likely lead to new packaging methods, methods many will be unfamiliar with. 

For instance, consumers may have to begin to buy milk in plastic pouches rather than cartons.

The supermarket has appealed for ideas and suggestions as to how they can reduce their plastic consumption, with the public open to submit any proposals.

The chief executive of Sainsbury’s, Mike Coupe, said: “Reducing plastic and packaging is not easy.

“We can’t do this on our own and we will be asking our suppliers and our customers to work with us.”

Efforts have already begun, with the supermarket planning to remove all plastic bags from its fruit and vegetable sections by the end of the month. 

To replace these, consumers are being invited to use their own bags, purchase reusable bags made from recycled materials or to simply put a barcode sticker on any loose items.

Beyond this, the supermarket is planning to encourage more customers to bring their own containers for products ranging from shampoo to raw meat and fish. 

They will also begin to sell more products loose, a tactic that has already been employed by rival Waitrose.

Their announcement follows the publication of a report by the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee which stated that reducing packaging, rather than replacing plastic with compostable or recyclable alternatives, should be the priority for retailers.

The reason for this is the lack of suitable infrastructure for the disposal of compostable or biodegradable materials in the UK. 

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Authored by

George Salmon
Political Editor
September 13 2019

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