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Iceland cuts plastic packaging by almost one-third


Retailer Iceland has reduced its use of plastic packaging by 29 per cent two years two years after making a pledge to remove plastics from all own label product packaging by the end of 2023. 

Iceland was the first retailer to make such a commitment and says it remains the only supermarket in the UK to have pledged to remove plastic in its entirety from its own label range.

The 29 per cent reduction reflects a removal of 3,794 tonnes from the retailer’s annual plastic usage, the equivalent weight of 36 blue whales. Iceland has committed to fulfil the commitment without passing any costs on to the customer, by investing heavily in making plastic free, sustainable solutions accessible to its millions of customers.

The company says it has, ‘seen significant wins across high volume ranges, such as frozen ready meals, where 74 lines have been moved from non-recyclable black plastic and into paperboard-based trays.’ In addition to its work to remove black plastic, Iceland has also made significant progress in addressing other difficult to recycle plastics, including PVC and polystyrene.

Richard Walker, Managing Director at Iceland, commented, “I’m enormously proud of the progress we’ve made over the past two years. To have removed 29 per cent at this stage is a real milestone in our journey and we continue to innovate and develop, week by week and tonne by tonne. The scale of the challenge we have taken on is huge, partly because of the lack of alternative solutions in some instances, the infrastructure in the manufacturing industry which in many cases is built around plastic usage.”

Photo source: Iceland