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How are supermarkets fighting plastic pollution?

02 April 2019

In two stores in the UK, Tesco has recently announced that it will be moving away from plastic wrapped fruit and veg, in a trial towards more environmentally-friendly packaging. This follows the likes of Asda, who vowed to get rid of 5p plastic bags by the end of 2019, and Aldi, who have already stopped selling 5p plastic bags in stores.

The need to reduce plastic waste has prompted novel initiatives from supermarkets, as each looks to cut down waste in their own way. Morrisons have increased plastic bag prices to 15p and have introduced paper bags in a bid to reduce waste, whilst Iceland have launched a plastic bottle recycling scheme in four stores across the country, giving consumers a 10p voucher for every deposit.

One supermarket in Thailand has gone one step further to combat plastic pollution: the Rimping supermarket in Chiangmai is using banana leaves instead of plastic to bunch together chillies, spring onions and peppers, with flexible bamboo to hold the produce together.

Sainsbury’s some way behind other supermarkets

According to Greenpeace, Sainsbury’s are “worst in class” when it comes to recycling plastic packaging.

The supermarket was said to be cutting just 77 tonnes of plastic packaging, compared to Asda’s 6,500 tonnes and Morrison’s 3,766 tonnes. Sainsbury’s have since adjusted this figure to over 2,000 tonnes, but still face condemnation from Greenpeace.

“If supermarkets fail to cut their plastic packaging, they’re sending pollution on a conveyor belt that could end up in our rivers and seas. This has to stop,” said Elena Polisano, ocean plastics campaigner at Greenpeace UK.


Do you want to reduce your plastic consumption? We are an experienced team of recycling specialists based in Dorset and Oxfordshire. For more information about our recycling services, or for further advice on how we can help with waste disposal and rubbish collections for your home or business, contact our team on 01202 675564.

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