UK-based supermarket retailer Asda has achieved a milestone in its ongoing commitment of reducing the amount of plastic used in product packaging.
Since February 2018, Asda has abolished 6500 tons of plastic from its own brand packaging.
Via product innovation and redesign, Asda has reduced the use of plastic in around 1000 individual product lines ranging from fresh fruit and vegetables to electronics and homewares. The reduced plastic is said to be equivalent weight of 600 million empty plastic bottles.
Over the last one year, the company has implemented various initiatives, including replacement of family chilled ready meal trays from black plastic to foil and change of pizza bases from non-recyclable polystyrene to fully recyclable cardboard.
The retailer has also replaced five million plastic bags on its bedding range with a cardboard band, as well as avoided the use of plastic covers on more than 50 million greetings cards and removed plastic windows and film from over 1.6 million mince pies at Christmas.
Asda has also implemented various measures to make packaging more recyclable, including changing all of its fresh produce trays from black plastic to clear. It has also pledged to make all of its packaging 100% recyclable by 2025.
The retailer said it has committed to continuing its focus on reducing the amount of plastic used in packaging and also works with industry bodies and relevant organizations to share best practice and develop new ideas.
Asda is also planning to launch a new plastic principle embedded across the business to ensure all new packaging designs avoid the use of unnecessary plastic and reduce impact on food waste or shelf life.
In addition, Asda is planning to use the most recyclable materials made from recycled content in the case of non-availability of viable alternative to plastic.
Asda president and CEO Roger Burnley said: “Making changes of this scale in a business of this size is never easy, but I was clear last year that we needed to take a root and branch review of what packaging we use for our products.”