All the supermarket giants are set to ditch black plastic from their own-label food and drink ranges within the next three months.
For in a potentially key milestone in the war on plastic, the latest research shows that High Street supermarkets are on the verge of eliminating hard-to-recycle black plastic from their own brand products.
The move follows the lead set to Morrisons this weeks when it became the first major retailer to remove all black plastic from its own-brand food and drink packaging in a decision that will make 4,000 tonnes of packaging recyclable for the first time.
Currently, tens of thousands of tonnes of black plastic each year end up in landfill or being incinerated because it contains a carbon pigment that cannot be detected by recycling machines.
But yesterday trade magazine The Grocer revealed that all other major supermarkets are on course to match Morrisons’ achievement by the end of January next year.
Tesco said it would have removed all black plastic by the end of December and was now "working with branded suppliers to do the same".
Asda also said it would remove black plastic by the end of 2019.
It recently announced it had removed 45 million ready meal trays containing black plastic from its range which it said alone removed 775 tonnes of previously unrecyclable plastic.
The Grocer said Sainsbury’s was another supermarket on course to remove black plastic by the end of December – by which time 6,000 tonnes of material will have switched to recyclable alternatives.
Waitrose said it had removed nearly 90per cent of the 2,291 tonnes of black plastic it uses as of the end of October and was “well on track” to get rid of it fully by the end of December.
The Co-op said the same thing meaning black plastic will have been removed from over 300 lines.
“We have been making good progress with eliminating black plastic across the board," according to Iceland head of recycling Stuart Lendrum, who said it expected not to be packing any Iceland own-label products in black plastic by the end of January 2020.
The magazine said Marks & Spencer is further behind but said it was on track to remove black plastic before the end of next year. Aldi also has a target of the end of 2020.
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