UK retailer Marks & Spencer has introduced a new banana waste reduction scheme across all stores across England.
The scheme allows customers to take home a cardboard bag of extra ripe bananas at a great value, minimising the amount of unsold food in stores.
The 'Go Bananas' bag contains at least three ready-to-eat bananas for 25p along with two recipes for families, including vegan banana muffins and banana bread.
The 'Go Bananas' bag is being rolled out to all stores in England after a successful trial period.
Marks & Spencer tested the bags at 10 stores and received a great response from local customers, selling a total of around 6,800 banana bags, or the equivalent of saving 18,000 loose bananas from ending up in food waste bins.
Bananas: 'Most Wasted Produce'
Pippa Masters, fruit buyer at Marks & Spencer, commented, "Bananas are among the most wasted produce at supermarkets as customers typically like to buy spotless yellow bananas to ripen at home, so we're excited to be extending our Go Bananas bags to more M&S stores, and further reduce food waste by offering bananas that are absolutely perfect for baking – and at a great value."
Masters also highlighted the increased use of bananas in baking and added, "Home baking has seen a huge rise over the last year, with banana bread becoming the ultimate zeitgeist bake and a favourite for families."
"Our Go Bananas bags are helping us to become more relevant, more often for customers who are looking to enjoy baking tasty and convenient food at home," she added.
Reduce Food Waste
M&S has committed to reducing its food waste by 50% before 2030.
In addition to the Go Bananas initiative, the retailer's other efforts include a nationwide surplus food redistribution scheme in collaboration with award-winning platform Neighbourly, which connects all its stores with local food charities.