Sir, Morrisons is to be commended for its recent announcement to bring back traditional brown paper bags for groceries in stores. It is another example of a business working towards the UK’s target of eliminating avoidable plastic waste by 2042. Many small incremental changes like this will add up over time to make a meaningful impact.
We must also be mindful that to achieve this goal we must work collaboratively with parties across all stages of the supply chain, including packaging manufacturers, distributors and retailers as well as consumers, waste collectors and recyclers.
There is still confusion over alternatives to single-use plastics - solutions must be kept simple and clearly communicated. Ideally, we should also be adopting uniform approaches to ensure compliance and positive results.
Take for example the use of “compostable” packaging as an alternative to single-use plastics. Whilst in theory this material can be composted, in reality, the vast majority of processes in the UK can’t cope with processing this material. This, however, is rarely understood by anyone other than the food waste processor, such as anaerobic digestion plant operators or the composting plants.
It is only by working together, and adopting a truly open dialogue, that we will solve the challenge we have set ourselves of eliminating single-use plastic.
Stephen Cameron, business development director, SWRnewstar