Co-Op crackers

Source: Co-op

It will see the convenience retailer save 1.1 million pieces of plastic

Co-op is ditching plastic and glitter from its Christmas range this year as it looks to reinforce its sustainability commitments.

The initiative applies to all its own-brand Christmas cards, gift wrap, bags and crackers, which launched in selected stores today (4 November).

It will see the convenience retailer save 1.1 million pieces of plastic.

All of the Christmas cards, wrap, crackers and gift bags will use metallic ink instead of glitter lamination and plastic lamination, and use minimal foil to make them 100% recyclable, saving 1.54 tonnes of packaging from landfill.

The 35-strong range includes plastic-free cracker barrels, the removal of plastic windows in card boxes, minimal ribbons and handles as well as being glitter-free, reducing the impact of microplastics on the environment.

It has also switched the toys in its own-brand crackers to games and gifts made from recyclable materials such as metal and paper, removing 470,000 pieces of plastic alone.

“We are committed in helping our members and customers to make environmentally friendly choices and reducing the environmental impact of products is and always has been at the core of Co-op,” said Co-op non-food product developer Simon Robinson.

“This is a step in the right direction as we continue to further our sustainability commitments whilst still being able to bring a fun and elegant collection to our stores.”

Co-op is also making it easier for consumers to recycle by including information on the reverse of its wrapping paper so the recipient knows how to recycle it.

The move finalises a landmark year for the retailer in its aim to make 100% of its own-brand packaging easy to recycle through household kerbside collection or a closed-loop in-house scheme by 2021.

Last month, it launched an in-store film collection scheme trial for ‘scrunchable’ plastic film, which aims to tackle plastic pollution and establish an accessible disposal route for the material, which is not currently collected by UK councils.

Co-op has also saved over 1,400 tonnes of virgin plastic from being produced each year, as it becomes the first UK retailer to switch all of its own-brand still, sparkling, flavoured water, carbonated drinks and mixers to bottles made out of 100% recycled material, meaning they will be fully recycled and recyclable.