Sainsbury’s customers can now recycle salad bags, crisp packets and biscuit wrappers at the supermarket, in a “significant” move to reduce plastic pollution.
The Big 4 grocer has installed soft plastic recycling points in around 520 of its 600 stores.
It trialled the scheme in the North East earlier this year, and plans to extend it to all of its supermarkets by the close of 2021.
Of the 300,000 tonnes of flexible plastics produced by the UK in 2019, just six per cent was recycled.
Less than a fifth of local authorities collect these plastics for recycling, and there is thought to be public uncertainty about whether they can be reused.
Sainsbury’s product director Claire Hughes said she was “really excited” by the “mass rollout” of the programme.
“Making recycling easier for our customers is a key part of our strategy to minimise the impact of single-use plastics on the environment,” she added.
The supermarket has pledged to halve its plastic packaging by 2025.
All Big 4 grocers must be able to recycle waste plastic bags and wrapping by the end of the year, having signed up to environmental charity WRAP’s “Plastics Pledge”.
WRAP chief executive Marcus Gover said the move would be a “critical step forwards” in tackling the amount of plastic that ended up in landfill.
Sainsbury’s claimed it was the “leading supermarket” with the “largest roll out” of soft plastic recycling points to date.