A group of UK Supermarkets including M&S, Morrisons, Ocado, CHEP and Waitrose have launched an industry wide refill trial.
If this trial is successful, members have pledges to roll out the refill solution to all stores across the UK. The coalition has been led by Catherine Conway from UnPackaged. We brought Catherine to Ireland last year to speak to over eighty Irish food and drink retailers about refill and how Irish retailers can go packaging free.
At this webinar over 77% of Irish food and drink businesses said they would move to refill in the future.
Refill is the solution we all need to excess packaging. Instead of relying on individually packed items, goods will be available in bulk allowing us to bring our own containers to supermarkets. Items like rice, pasta, cleaning products cosmetics etc. But it’s not just good for the environment. A UK consumer group found that items in the scheme are 10-15% cheaper than loose products.
This system is already available in zero packaging shops here in Ireland. Check out this handy map to find a refill store near you.
Did you know that 99%of plastic packaging is made from fossil fuels?
We need to make refill and reuse a regular feature of the nation’s shopping habits. If we can bring our own shopping bags, why not a few containers?
Moving retailers towards refill is a big step on the road to a real and meaningful circular economy. This could spark the investment in reuse infrastructure that we need to progress to a zero waste world.
**Thank you to Veganic in St. Stephen's Green Shopping Centre, for letting us take photos of their refill section and naked fruit and veg.