Friday, 17 July 2009

Supermarket Waste and Packaging

There has recently been a few reports in the news on the ongoing supermarket packaging issue after the Local Government Association recently called on WRAP asking them to to publish, every three months, the amount of packaging each supermarket produces.

Supermarket waste and packaging adds to the costs of householders council tax bills as it adds to the waste in all our bins for landfill. This can be reduced by having more card and less plastic packaging or reduced packaging of both the hard plunnets and wrapping varieties (Currently within Bracknell most soft plastics can not be recycled through the bin collections).

Every year, the major stores provide details of waste to the government’s waste reduction body (WRAP) giving details of how much packaging they generate. However despite requests by the Local Government Association (LGA) for this information to be made public, both WRAP and most supermarkets do not.

Of the major supermarkets contacted by the LGA, only Waitrose, M&S and Morrisons provided details about how much packaging they produce. Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Co-op all referred councils to WRAP who failed to disclose how much packaging each supermarket produces. Lidl gave no reply and Aldi were not included in the requests.

I was please to see that Bracknell very own Waitrose (HQ based in Bracknell and employing around 2,500 people) responded and are fully signed up to WRAP. Waitrose have been recycling there own waste for 20 years. It is of course a big shame that the Shop in Birth Hill was closed (Aldi opened at the same site on Thursday). Waitrose was located too far from a main road and past the Sainsbury's supermarket. I hope that a Waitrose store will one day return to Bracknell.

However the LGA did perform there own research here were Waitrose did not perform so well when it comes to the actual recyclable waste.

I hope the LGA get their request to have WRAP publish, every three months, so that the public can track the reductions in waste produced by supermarkets.

Links for the above


LGA Reprot on Packaging

Supermarket Waste Report

Waitrose investing in Bracknell

Waitrose Packaging policy

1 comment:

  1. I believe stores and packaging companies should cover the costs of disposing of plastics. It shouldn't be the consumer paying for this via their council tax. It is not the consumer's choice to have over packaged goods, it is the decision of the supermarket. Councils need to pinpoint these companies and charge then accordingly.

    Maybe there should be something similar to the WEEE Directive solely to be aimed at Packaging companies and supermarkets.

    WEEE makes manufacturers of electrical goods responsible for the disposal of their products one the consumer no longer has need for the item.

    Explaination of the WEEE directive can be found here