Not just any vegetable aisle! M&S trials plastic-free fresh produce and introduces an instore GREENGROCER
- M&S are trialling package-free fruit and vegetables in one of its London stores
- Instead of ‘best-before’ dates, greengrocers will advise customers on freshness
- The supermarket is introducing paper bags and phasing out plastic barcodes
- The retailer says it aims to save 580 tonnes of waste over two years
Marks & Spencer is launching more 90 lines of loose fruit and vegetables free of all plastic packaging.
The initiative will be part of a trial which will see ‘best before’ date labels removed and trained greengrocers on hand to help customers.
The range includes hard fruit and vegetables like potatoes and bananas but also more perishable items such as soft fruits and berries, which will be sold in compostable punnets.
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Loose fresh produce will be trialled in M&S´s Tolworth branch in south-west London where ‘best before’ dates will be disappear and greengrocers will be on hand to advise customers about keeping fruit and vegetables fresh at home. (M&S/PA)
The M&S branch in Tolworth, in south-west-London, will give shoppers two aisles of fresh produce for their fruit and veg.
Greengrocers will offer customers help to pick and weigh their products and advise on how best to preserve fresh produce and prevent food waste.
M&S said it has also committed to launching additional lines of loose produce, replacing plastic produce bags with paper ones and phasing out plastic barcode stickers in favour of eco-friendly alternatives in every one of its UK stores.
The supermarket aims to save 580 tonnes of waste over two years.
Louise Nicholls, head of food sustainability at M&S, said: ‘Our trial at Tolworth is an important milestone in our plastic reduction journey and bringing back the traditional greengrocer will play a key part in educating our customers.
‘Our plan is to create long-term impact in the future using tangible insights from the Tolworth store trial.’
The retailer has already phased out 75 million pieces of plastic cutlery given out in its stores each year and replaced two million straws with paper alternatives as part of its plastics plan, which aims to remove 1,000 tonnes of plastic packaging by spring 2019.
Early last year M&S attracted criticism for selling plastic-wrapped slices of cauliflower, labelled cauliflower ‘steak’, for £2 each.
Details of the new trial were revealed after the struggling high street chain announced the locations of 17 more store closures.
Last year Morrisons announced that it was bringing back brown paper bags for loose fruit and vegetables, which it said would prevent 150 million small plastic bags from being used every year.
Iceland also carried out a trial to see whether its shoppers would pay 10p for a paper bag as an alternative to single-use plastic bags.
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