Tesco is replacing the plastic tubs used for its laundry detergent pods with new recyclable cardboard packs.

It predicted the move would save more than 250 tonnes of plastic a year and over four million pieces of plastic across eight lines.

The new boxes contain more than 90% recycled cardboard, and are FSC certified, with a thin plastic liner inside to protect the pods.

They can be placed in normal household recycling bins.

Tesco said more than 24 million people in the UK regularly bought laundry products, with more than 38% already opting for pods – compared with 28% choosing powder detergent and 34% preferring liquid or gel.

This move comes as part of Tesco’s 4Rs packaging strategy to tackle the impact of plastic waste. This means Tesco removes plastic where it can, reduces where it can’t, looks at ways to reuse more and recycle what’s left.

Since the launch of the 4Rs strategy in August 2019, Tesco has removed 1.8 billion pieces of plastic and reduced packaging by more than 10,000 tonnes.

“Customers are focused on getting great value right now, but we know that they still want to choose products that use less or no plastic in their packaging,” said Tesco group quality director Sarah Bradbury. “This is one of many changes we’re making to reduce unnecessary plastic from products right across our stores.”

Fruit juices, crisps and cheese are among many products that are all now being produced using less plastic.