In a bid to be more eco-friendly and create a renewable environment, Asda has launched a “sustainability store” which has refill stations and loose fruit and veg.
Asda’s supermarket in Middleton, Leeds, has become the first of its stores that is focused on sustainability and it hopes to encourage shoppers to have the initiative in reducing, reusing and recycling. In doing so, this could save an estimated one million pieces from being used each year.
Joining forces for Asda’s new sustainability store, major brands such as PG Tips, Radox, Kellogg’s and Persil have collaborated with the exciting move. The store will be selling such products as shampoo and laundry detergent, which customers can then take home in refillable containers.
Alongside Asda’s own branded canned products will be Heinz, which can be purchased at the store without the use of outer plastic packaging.
There will be 53 fresh items sold in total that are being sold loose, while flowers will be sold wrapped in paper.
Meanwhile, shoppers will find that there are also recycling points for items that are typically more difficult to recycle, such as crisp packets, cosmetic packaging, plastic toys and toothpaste tubes.
In addition to this, the Middleton store will feature a community zone in which charities can host partnerships. The first collaboration will be with the Salvation Army and it will last a total of three months. There will be a “drop and shop” space where customers can drop off their unwanted items and clothing.
Determined to encourage shoppers to think more sustainably, the supermarket has launched a “Greener at Asda Price” scheme – this is a national promise which insists that both loose and unwrapped products will cost no more than the wrapped equivalent.
Roger Burnley, the chief executive of Asda, said: “Today marks an important milestone in our journey as we tackle plastic pollution and help our customers to reduce, reuse and recycle.
“We have always known that we couldn’t go on this journey alone, so it is fantastic to work in tandem with more than 20 of our partners and suppliers who have answered the call to test innovative sustainable solutions with us.”
Asda has said that the Middleton store will be acting as a location to test and learn what elements of the new supermarket concept are appealing to customers and then it could potentially be developed at a much bigger scale in 2021.
Alongside the sustainability store, Asda has confirmed that it has a new strategy in place for plastics and sustainability in general.
The supermarket has stated that it recognises that to be successful, sustainable shopping has to be both accessible and affordable to all customers. The store has said it is committed to generating zero carbon emissions by 2040, which would reduce waste by 50 per cent. And by no later than 2050, the store plans to have a net regenerative impact on nature.
By 2023, the supermarket chain hopes to have introduced over 40 refillable products and to have invested in 50 closed-loop and circular projects by 2030 – to do so, it will work closely with waste management companies, recyclers and product developers.
After announcing its latest move, Asda has been praised by environmental groups, including Greenpeace.
Lead plastics campaigner at Greenpeace UK, Nina Schrank, has said: “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.
“We hope that this store is the first of many; we need to see so much more of this from across the supermarket sector.”