Asda To Launch Refill Zones Across More Stores
Asda is set to roll out packaging-free shopping across more of its stores allowing customers to fill their own reusable containers with everyday groceries including cereal, pasta, laundry detergent and pet food. Shoppers will be able to bypass
Asda is set to roll out packaging-free shopping across more of its stores allowing customers to fill their own reusable containers with everyday groceries including cereal, pasta, laundry detergent and pet food.
Shoppers will be able to bypass plastic bottles, boxes and shrink-wrap, instead dispensing goods produced by household-name brands directly into their own glassware and tubs brought from home when the supermarket chain launches sustainable “refill zones” in four more stores, following a successful trial at one of its Leeds branches
Since it began piloting its first refill zone in Middleton, Leeds, last October demand has been so great among consumers that sales of some goods have out-performed packaged sales, Asda said.
It also claimed the store has also started attracting customers keen to shop sustainably from outside the local area.
The four new stores offering refill zones will be in York, Buckinghamshire, Warwickshire and Glasgow.
Products available for decanting will include Kellogg’s, Nestlé and own-label cereals, Napolina pasta, Tilda rice, Radox shower gel and Persil laundry detergent.
York will be home to the largest of the chain’s refill sections when the initiative launches in October. More than 70 branded and own-label products, including pet food such as Whiskas and Pedigree, will be spread out across 18 bays.
The scheme will be introduced in Rugby, Warwickshire, in August, and in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, in December. Asda will also open its first Scottish refill zone at its Glasgow Toryglen store in August.
Waitrose was the first of the major supermarket chains to experiment with packaging-free zones, in 2019, and has been credited with helping to popularise “refill culture” in the UK.
Commenting on Asda’s refill rollout, Jo Morley, head of campaigns at Bristol-based environmental organisation City to Sea, said: “We know that the public are more concerned about plastic pollution than ever before, and looking for ways to live with less waste, so we welcome the news that Asda are going to be expanding their refill offering.”
She added: “It’s brilliant to see Asda leading the way, making refill and reuse more accessible and more affordable.”
Many environmentalists regard refill models as more effective at combatting plastic waste than sending single-use packaging to be recycled.
While figures from the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) show 70 per cent of UK packaging waste was either recycled or recovered in 2017, just 14 per cent of all plastic packaging globally is collected for recycling after use, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
Plastic packaging that does reach recycling plants can only be recycled a finite number of times – typically a maximum of 10 times – before the material becomes too degraded to reuse.
The UK uses an estimated five million tonnes of plastic every year, nearly half of which is packaging, according to Defra.