Sainsbury’s customers unhappy with new meat packaging that ‘destroys’ product

Sainsbury’s customers are unhappy with its new vacuum-sealed meat packaging that reportedly ‘destroys’ the product when opened.

The supermarket chain updated its mincemeat packaging in an industry-leading move to cut plastic and hit net-zero targets, but some vocal customers now feel the new wrapping is having an impact on the taste and texture of the meat.

The move looks set to save 450 tonnes of plastic annually – but shoppers are calling for the old packaging to return.

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The switch will see a minimum 55% reduction in plastic per product and it is the first move of its kind by a UK supermarket, as reported by The Manchester Evening News.

One customer took to Twitter to say that the mincemeat now resembles “mush, dog food, or mince the texture of a single giant burger” due to the vacuum-sealed packaging.


Others have complained about the move made by Sainsbury’s, with one saying it is “not mince at all now” and that the product “has now been destroyed and is now a slab of compressed meat.”

Another customer claimed: “Its a sticky lump of goo, all the texture gone in the vacuum. The new packaging is inappropriate for a freeflow minced beef product.”

A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s said: “We are always looking for new ways to innovate packaging to meet our ambitious plastic reduction targets.

“Our new vacuum-packed beef mince packaging uses 55% less plastic and saves over 450 tonnes of plastic a year, without impacting taste or quality.”

Director of product and innovation at Sainsbury’s, Claire Hughes said earlier this year: “We know our customers expect us to be reducing the use of plastic across our products and we’re constantly looking for new ways to innovate to meet our Plan for Better plastic reduction targets.

“We strive to be bold in the changes we are making, which is why we’re pleased to be the first UK retailer to vacuum pack all our beef mince range without impacting the quantity or great quality of product that our customers expect.

“This is the latest in a long line of changes we have pioneered in the space working collaboratively with our suppliers, and customers can expect much more to come from Sainsbury’s.”



18 Comments. Leave new

  • Carol O’Malley
    March 30, 2023 6:00 pm

    I definitely won’t be buying mince meat . It looks disgusting 🤮

  • I won’t buy it anymore from Sainsbury’s.. it looks disgusting in the packet! And the texture has changed as well…it resembles what I WOULDN’T even give my Dog to eat,!!

  • Philip Randles
    March 31, 2023 9:25 am

    I agree with Carol, pet food at best (no disrespect to pets).

  • Waitrose been doing this for years. I don’t see how it can have a negative impact on flavour or texture just by sucking out the air in the packaging. Maybe people need to learn how to brown meat and add flavour to their food. They’d all be moaning if no action was taken to reduce plastic use. Or maybe we should all switch to buying meat from the butcher which would reduce packing even more.

  • I bought some in the local sainsbury’s (we only have the small ones nearby after they shut the big one in town) doesn’t act like mince and has different texture due to being squished in that packaging. I won’t be buying again. Discovered that M&S still have proper mince and was half the price, so will be going there instead for my mince needs.

  • Carol Murray
    March 31, 2023 9:36 pm

    You do have to spend a couple of minutes more to brake the mince down, which I think is such a small inconvenience, especially when you think of all the plastic that is being saved.
    The taste and quality still excellent.

  • Yes waitrose do package their mince similar to this but they have it down to a fine art, there is no comparison. Waitrose mince is still free flowing where as sainsburys is one big soft mess, also I noticed some packets the meat was brown as if air have managed to get into packet.

  • Denise Standen
    April 1, 2023 12:34 pm

    It’s awful. Takes longer to cook as you have to try to break it down. Smells awful when you open the packet.
    Still on the plus side I visited my local butcher who does not feel the need to use any plastic at all and it was the sameprice. Happy days I know where I will be buying my meat from now on.

  • David Curry
    April 1, 2023 2:21 pm

    Only people without a clue about meat would complain about this. Professional moaners 🙄

  • It might be saving plastic, but the label on the new packaging says that none of the packaging is recyclable. At least with the old style packaging you could recycle the tray.

  • never more happy to be part vegan. yuck.

  • it’s not the texture that bothers me, it’s the way you have to open the packet to read the recycling information, to only find out it cannot be recycled. the saving is purely for sainsburys benefit, less packaging means less weight, means less fuel costs in transport. we don’t see any savings, it doesn’t get passed on . just more profit for them.

  • I don’t object to the shrink-wrap principle, but do wish the new packaging was recyclable.
    The old pack was 90% recyclable but none of it is now which is adding to landfill waste.
    The pack is simply reducing their haulage cost, & not doing anything else for the environment.

  • it’s not the texture that bothers me, it’s the way you have to open the packet to read the recycling information, to only find out it cannot be recycled. the saving is purely for sainsburys benefit, less packaging means less weight, means less fuel costs in transport. we don’t see any savings, it doesn’t get passed on . just more profit for them. I won’t be buying it because it cannot be recycled, that’s the important thing, not the look.

  • Sainsburys mince is disgusting when you open the packet it us one compressed lump even when trying to brown it does not break up as mince should. Will not br buying anymore complete waste of money. Back to Aldi, their is same quality and cheaper winwin

  • John Farrington
    April 8, 2023 9:58 am

    Mince like sick won’t be buying again absolutely awful

  • Gregory Lynam
    July 22, 2023 7:05 pm

    I agree with most of the negative comments on Sainsbury’s decision to Vak pak their beef mince.
    Against my better judgement I purchased 2 packs. It looks disgusting in the packet and when you open it, it reveals a vile squashed up mess of meat.
    Difficult to break up and takes longer to cook as a result, also the carton is not recyclable??
    I was in Lidl the next day and so much nicer to see the original trays without compressed mush inside.
    So in future I’ll be buying my mince beef in Lidl or at a Butchers.
    Seriously bad move Sainsbury’s.


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