Lidl has revealed plans to replace all single-use fruit and vegetable plastic bags in its stores with compostable alternatives, in a bid to reduce plastic as part of its recycling programme.
The move will see 264 tonnes of conventional single-use plastic being removed.
The discount retailer said the new bags have been designed to be re-used as caddy liners for domestic food waste collections to give them a longer life.
They will also be suitable for home composting, according to Lidl.
Lidl also revealed it will be launching a trial plastic bag and wrapping recycling scheme across 12 stores in the West Midlands, if successful it will be extended nationwide.
The scheme will allow customers to return soft plastic packaging, which is not currently collected from homes by more than 80 per cent of UK local authorities.
The items, which can be recycled using the scheme, include carrier bags, biscuit wrappers, crisp packets, bread bags, pet food pouches and can be from any retailer or brand.
Shoppers will be able to return their soft plastic packaging at accessible drop-off points at the front of Lidl stores.
All eligible soft plastics will be recycled into products, such as refuse sacks and rigid construction products.
“At Lidl GB we are committed to tackling excessive plastic waste and our compostable fruit and vegetable bags are the latest innovation to help limit the amount of plastic in our environment,” Lidl GB chief executive Christian Härtnagel said.
“As a bricks-and-mortar retailer, how we operate in our stores, and the packaging we use plays such a vital role in helping customers to tackle their plastic consumption.
“By offering convenient solutions such as compostable bags and making it easier for customers to recycle more plastic through our in-store drop off points, we are hoping to give customers the opportunity to take small steps to reduce and recycle their plastic packaging.”
The new scheme builds on Lidl’s plastic commitments to make 100 per cent of own-brand packaging widely recyclable, reusable or refillable by 2025.