AUSTRALIA – Supermarket chain Coles has announced plans to axe plastic openings from some of its home-brand tissue boxes to minimize its use of plastic packaging.
Coles says the initiative will remove 13 tonnes of plastic annually from circulation. The company has calculated the figure based on unit sales for the 52-week period until June 2022.
The change will also allow the cardboard tissue boxes to be placed directly into paper recycling bins without having to remove the plastic material.
Coles General Manager of Own Brand Quality and Responsible Sourcing, Charlotte Rhodes, said the change was part of Coles’ aim to have 100 percent reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging by 2025.
“This small but significant change will remove 13 tonnes of plastic from circulation in one year which is the equivalent of 412,000 plastic bags,” she said.
The change applies to its Coles Facial Tissues Aloe Vera 95 pack, Coles Facial Tissues Eucalyptus 95 pack, as well as Coles Facial Tissues White 224 and 90 packs.
Made using 95% recycled material, Coles’ new tissue boxes have been put through robust tests to ensure their high standard of performance.
Each new box has a tissue elevator and a smaller opening for more convenient usage.
Rhodes added: “Today’s announcement demonstrates our commitment to reducing unnecessary and problematic plastic packaging in our stores.
“Our customers want to see change when it comes to plastic packaging, and this is one way of giving customers a choice to be part of the solution.”
Earlier this month Coles announced that it will stop selling soft-plastic shopping bags in all stores and online by June, a move that will remove 230 million plastic bags from circulation.
While customers are encouraged to bring a bag to the store, those who forget can purchase a 100 percent recycled paper bag that can be recycled kerbside.
Other initiatives to reduce unnecessary and problematic plastic packaging include removing plastic measuring scoops from Coles Brand and Coles Ultra laundry powders – removing three tonnes of plastic in a year; removing 41 tonnes of plastic from the Organic range and replacing plastic bread tags with cardboard alternatives which diverted 79 tonnes of polystyrene plastic from landfill each year.
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