German discounters simultaneously announce ambitious plastic reduction targets

Lidl and Aldi have become the latest multiples to confirm commitment to reducing plastic, with long and short-term plans afoot to reduce the amount of plastic used



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9 March 2018 | 0

As the world slowly wakes up to the crisis it’s facing with our addiction to plastic, Lidl and Aldi have become the latest supermarkets to announce a number of commitments to reduce the amount of plastic in circulation through their stores.

Under its new targets, Lidl has said it will:

  • By 2022, reduce plastic packaging volumes by 20%
  • By 2025, 100% of its own-brand packaging will be recyclable*, reusable, refillable or renewable
  • By 2025, 50% of material used in own-brand packaging will come from recyclable materials**

The company also revealed that microbeads would no longer be used in cosmetic and household products.

The new plastic reduction programme is centred on what is known as a circular programme, aiming to drive demand for recycled materials. This will be achieved through a combination of specification damages, material substitution and market development.

Changes will begin to be implemented in-store in the coming weeks, in response to growing demand for loose fruit and vegetables. Lidl is trialling the introduction of 11 additional loose options, making loose options approximately 25% of its range.

“Today we announce ambitious targets as part of our award-winning sustainability programme,” said JP Scally, MD of Lidl Ireland and Northern Ireland. “We have looked at plastic packaging in the context of our wider sustainability commitments, and strongly believe that our circular approach will deliver a viable long-term solution, without compromising on our ability to deliver exceptional value to customers.”

Aldi’s pledge

Meanwhile, Aldi Ireland has pledged that 100% of its own-label packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2022. The company has commited to a 50% reduction in all product packaging by 2025 (relative to 2015 levels), working towards the goal that half of all Aldi product packaging will be made from recycled material by 2025.

Giles Hurley, group managing director of Aldi Ireland, said that the supermarket’s customers trust Aldi offer high-quality products at unbeatable prices, but also to help them lead healthier, better lives.

 “That includes reducing waste,” Hurley said, “particularly around unnecessary packaging and plastics that damage the environment we live in.

“While we cannot do this alone – and call on others to collaborate with us and drive change industry-wide – we are committed to doing all we can to lead the way and to bring our customers on this journey with us,” he said.


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