Vacuum Packed Mince 3

Sainsbury’s claims the move will save 450 tonnes of plastic annually

Sainsbury’s has removed traditional plastic tray packaging across its entire beef mince range to reduce plastic use.

In a first for UK retailers, Sainsbury’s said it would save 450 tonnes of plastic annually from the move into vacuum packaging.

The change will be made across all Sainsbury’s-branded beef mince products, currently retailing from £1.99 for 500g.

The new packaging, available from today, will result in a minimum 55% reduction in plastic per product.

It also offered a more compact pack size for the same weight than Sainsbury’s previous packaging formats, thereby also saving shelf space for consumers, it said.

Additionally, the vacuum format will preserve freshness by removing all oxygen, which typically causes a product to spoil.

“We strive to be bold in the changes we are making, which is why we’re pleased to be the first UK retailer to vacuum pack all our beef mince range without impacting the quantity or great quality of product our customers expect,” said Claire Hughes, director of product and innovation at Sainsbury’s.

This is the latest step towards Sainsbury’s reaching its goal of halving its use of own-brand plastic packaging by 2025.

In 2019, the retailer removed plastic bags for loose fruit, vegetables and bakery items from all stores and removed black plastic from chilled ready meals. More recently it removed single-use plastic lids across some own-brand dairy lines, saving 71 million pieces of plastic per year.

“We know our customers expect us to be reducing the use of plastic across our products and we’re constantly looking for new ways to innovate to meet our Plan for Better plastic reduction targets,” added Hughes.