Asda launches new sustainability store trial

Asda has begun a trial of a new sustainability store that is designed to encourage and make it easier for customers to reduce, reuse, and recycle plastics.

Located in Middleton in Leeds, Asda will test which aspects of the store are most effective with a view to rolling these offerings out to other locations in 2021.

The supermarket chain has partnered with a number of famous brands to develop the store, including PG Tips, Vimto, Kellogg’s, Radox, and Persil. Among the features introduced are 15 refill stations that offer a selection of over 30 common household items such as cereals, tea bags, and rice and pasta. There are also 53 fresh produce lines that are sold loose and unwrapped, recycling facilities for items difficult to recycle, such as crisp and biscuit packets, and a reverse vending machine for cans, plastic, and glass drinks bottles.

Asda has additionally pledged that loose and unwrapped products will cost no more than wrapped equivalents.

The initiative is part of a new plastics reduction strategy being employed by the retailer. On top of its 2018 target to reduce plastic packaging by 15% by next year, it has now committed to remove 3 billion pieces of plastic from own-brand products by 2025 as well as to introduce over 40 refillable products by 2023.

Roger Burnley, CEO and president at Asda commented: “Today marks an important milestone in our journey as we tackle plastic pollution and help our customers to reduce, re-use and recycle. We have always known that we couldn’t go on this journey alone, so it is fantastic to work in tandem with more than 20 of our partners and suppliers, who have answered the call to test innovative sustainable solutions with us.

“This is an issue that matters greatly to our customers – our own insight tells us that more than 80% believe that supermarkets have a responsibility to reduce the amount of single use plastics in stores. We want to give them the opportunity to live more sustainably by offering them great product choices and value, underpinned by a promise that they won’t pay more for greener options at Asda.

“During the next few months we will listen to customers and colleagues’ feedback on Middleton so we can understand how we can continue to reduce our environmental impacts, whilst continuing to deliver quality service at a great price.”