UK retailer Asda has announced that it has commenced a test run of its ‘sustainability store’ in Middleton, Leeds.
The outlet aims to help shoppers reduce, reuse and recycle with ease and the retailer expects to remove around one million pieces of plastic annually through this store.
Asda has partnered with some of the UK’s most popular household brands, such as PG Tips, Vimto, Kellogg’s, Radox and Persil, to offer sustainable versions of popular products.
Christina Dixon, senior ocean campaigner at the environmental investigation agency, commented, “Asda’s sustainability store shows real vision for a shopping experience that reduces plastic packaging and protects our planet, while also demonstrating that checking out on plastic doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag.
“To beat plastic pollution, we need bold system change and innovative approaches to re-use and refill, so we hope the lessons from this store can be scaled across the country and inspire sector-wide change to shift away from unnecessary and single-use plastics.”
In early 2020, the retailer had announced plans to launch the pilot project in May of this year.
The store features 15 refill stations offering a selection of more than 30 household staples in a refillable format.
The offering includes a selection of Kellogg’s cereals, PG Tips tea bags, Quaker Oats, Lavazza and Taylors of Harrogate coffee beans, Vimto cordial and Asda’s private brand rice and pasta.
Refill services are also available for popular shampoo and conditioner brands, Persil laundry detergent, hand wash and shower gel from Unilever.
Asda CEO and president, Roger Burnley, said, “Our insight tells us that more than 80% believe that supermarkets have a responsibility to reduce the amount of single-use plastics in stores.
“We want to give them [customers] the opportunity to live more sustainably by offering them great product choices and value, underpinned by a promise that they won’t pay more for greener options at Asda.”
In the fresh produce segment, the retailer has removed plastic wraps and packaging from around 53 product lines including cauliflowers, mushrooms, apples, cabbages and baby plum tomatoes, among others.
It has also removed plastic wrappings from Heinz and private-label multipack cans.
The store also houses Asda’s first reverse vending machine for cans, plastic and glass drinks bottles and a hanger recycling facility.
An 'Opportunity To Go Plastic-Free'
Nina Schrank, lead plastics campaigner at Greenpeace UK, stated, “Asda’s new sustainability store reflects what people are looking for - the opportunity to go plastic-free.
“By offering innovative refill stations, loose fruit and vegetables and plenty of sustainably sourced household goods, they have bought what used to be a niche shopping experience into the mainstream, all under one roof.”
The store will also showcase sustainable clothing made from recycled polyester and coat hanger-less denim under the George brand.
The outlet also houses a community zone for pop-ups and partnerships with charities.
The first collaboration will see the retailer teaming up with the Salvation Army to test a ‘Drop and Shop’ outlet for three months, where customers will be able to donate unwanted clothing and other items.
Asda has also teamed up with vintage wholesaler Pre-Loved to sell bespoke vintage clothing from well-known brands.
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.