Aldi shoppers will soon be able to recycle used own label coffee pods by dropping them off at one of thousands of collection points.
They will also have the option of registering for kerbside recycling collections of the pods, providing they live in one of the nine participating local authority areas.
Aldi is claiming a supermarket first by joining the not-for-profit recycling service Podback, which offers a network of over 6,500 collection points across the UK, in locations such as convenience stores, where consumers can drop off coffee, tea and hot chocolate pods.
Podback was set up last year by Nestlé and Jacobs Douwe Egberts UK. Currently 16 brands can be recycled through the scheme, including Nespresso and Starbucks. Aldi own label pods are to be added early next year.
Shoppers must print a label and order a plastic bag from the scheme’s website at Podback.org, to be used when dropping off the pod at a collection point.
Alternatively, the nine local authorities offering kerbside collections in the scheme are Cheltenham Borough Council, City of Wolverhampton Council, Chichester District Council, Conwy County Borough Council, Exeter City Council, Ipswich Borough Council, London Borough of Waltham Forest, Oxford City Council and South Derbyshire District Council.
The recycled aluminium pods are reprocessed in the UK, according to Podback. Recycled aluminium pods are used in the manufacture of beverage cans and car components. Plastic pods are used in furniture, industrial packaging and building products. The used coffee grounds go through anaerobic digestion to produce a combination of biogas and soil improver, according to the scheme.
Aldi said its participation would enable shoppers to recycle up to 268 tonnes of plastic and 20 tonnes of aluminium each year.
“We’re pleased to be joining Podback on this journey – especially as the first supermarket member,” said Aldi plastics and packaging director Richard Gorman.
“It’s important to us that we help customers do the right thing once our hot drink pods have been used, and we look forward to seeing how our partnership with Podback progresses.”
Podback executive director Rick Hindley said: “We are delighted to welcome Aldi as the first supermarket brand member of Podback.
“This marks a key milestone for the programme and we are looking forward to working with Aldi to promote our service to their customers. We hope other retailers will follow Aldi’s lead and offer their own brand pod customers the opportunity to recycle through Podback.”