Waitrose and M&S are bidding to raise awareness of aerosol can recycling through PoS material. New shelf barkers going in store will advise: "Recycle your empty aerosols. Visit www.recycleaerosols.co.uk."

The website is operated by the British Aerosol Manufacturers' Association, which said 45% of consumers did not realise they could recycle aerosol cans.

George Mattes, John Lewis Partnership manager of merchandise standards, said: "BAMA has taken an important environmental initiative that we are planning to support."

M&S beauty product technologist Sarah Lindley said: "This kind of information can definitely help the customer to understand more about the product."

BAMA said that five years ago only 7% of local authorities collected aerosol cans for recycling, but that 75% of councils were now recycling them. Each year the UK uses 600 million aerosols a year, which represent 30,000 tonnes of reclaimable high-grade metal.