Sainsbury’s is defending its new minced beef packaging after some consumers complained that the meat turns to ‘mush’ when opened.
The supermarket had announced it was “the first UK retailer to vacuum pack all beef mince saving 450 tonnes of plastic each year” and cut plastic per-pack by 55%.
It came after shoppers expressed their dislikes, with one saying the meat now resembled “a rectangle of mushed off cuts” as it “destroys” the product.
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The meat had been packaged in a plastic tray covered with film, but Sainsbury’s has now printed leaflets to better explain the eco-friendly change to consumers.
Others wrote reviews on the Sainsbury’s website., saying “The dog would not like it” and labelling the mince “disgusting”.
Another wrote: “The new packaging is awful, it turns the mince into mush. It’s very hard to cook and smells off, looks very unappetising. Would not recommend.”
Steve Dresser, the head of retail consultancy Grocery Insight, told the BBC: “It’s fair to say the change has not been well received, at all.”
He said that while sustainability is important for customers “it’s a very fine balance. This looks like a simple move that doesn’t require the customers to do anything differently, ” he said.
“But the packaging appears to have negatively affected the product quality which is clearly something that’s impacted customers.”
A Sainsbury’s spokesperson 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.”