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Sustainability News in Retail

Sustainability News in Retail

Sustainability Jun 13, 2024 at 10:24am

Completely Retail Marketplace looks at the latest Sustainability News from the world of retail.

Consumers are consciously choosing to buy from brands that commit to sustainability. Nowadays, going green is about more than just having recycling stations in store or asking customers to recycle their shopping bags. Sustainability allows brands to better connect with their customers and do their bit for the planet. Retailers are increasing their efforts by reengineering their stores and finding creative new ways to help the planet.

Read the below Snapshot blog post to gain further insight into the latest sustainability news in retail.

Sustainability news in retail

Sainsbury’s Introduces Nectar Points for EV Charging Customers

Sainsbury’s announced that it will become the first EV charging provider in the UK to integrate a national loyalty scheme. Starting at the end of June, all Smart Charge customers can earn one Nectar point for every pound spent on charging.

Smart Charge, Sainsbury’s ultra-rapid EV charging network, boasts over 400 charging bays nationwide. Today, 12 new Smart Charge bays were launched at the Sainsbury’s London Enfield superstore.

Patrick Dunne, Sainsbury’s director of property, procurement, and EV ventures, commented on this milestone, stating, "This is a significant step for our Smart Charge business as we introduce loyalty benefits through the UK's leading loyalty program, Nectar.

"From June onwards, customers using any of our 400 Smart Charge bays will enjoy the added perk of earning Nectar points to use on their preferred brands. With our extensive network of bays and conveniently located stores, accessing ultra-rapid charging has never been easier for UK EV drivers, and now they can also benefit from collecting Nectar points."

Sustainability News in retail

M&S Collaborates with Recycling Tech Firm to Monitor Plastic Packaging

M&S is partnering with a recycling technology firm to monitor the journey of its plastic packaging, including drinks bottles and cartons. This collaboration involves the use of the Polytag system, which applies invisible tags to containers. These tags can be detected by electronic readers at recycling centers, facilitating efficient tracking and sorting.

The Polytag system has been tested with retailers such as The Co-op, Aldi, and Ocado, which has also invested in the technology. However, this initiative with M&S represents the first large-scale deployment of the system.

As part of the project, M&S will fund the installation of two new readers at recycling sites in Northern Ireland and Edmonton, North London. These will join existing sites in Teesside and North Wales.

The project coincides with retailers preparing for new plastic packaging disposal fees under the government’s extended producer responsibility (EPR) regime, set to take effect next year. Retailers must currently track and report their packaging sales, with upcoming fees expected to align with these practices.

Polytag’s CEO, Alice Rackley, explained that the system would help sort plastic pots and bottles, distinguishing between food containers, which are more valuable, and those contaminated with household chemicals, such as bleach. This simplifies the recycling process.

"There is a massive single-use plastic crisis, and we must start collecting data to address it," Rackley told The Guardian. She also mentioned that proving proper recycling could potentially help retailers negotiate lower EPR fees.

Sustainability news in retail

B&Q Introduces Plastic Plant Pot Recycling Stations Nationwide

B&Q is set to roll out plastic plant pot recycling stations in over 100 stores across the UK this year, reinforcing its commitment to promoting sustainable shopping options.

Customers can drop off their unwanted pots, which B&Q will recycle into new planters. The 100% recycled plastic Blacksmith Planters, designed to withstand the weather, will be available at B&Q stores for £4. Samantha Dyer, B&Q’s head of quality and sustainability, stated, "Our business aims to make a positive impact through concrete actions and keep innovation at the forefront of our strategy to help customers make sustainable choices.

"These new recycling stations will enable us to repurpose items typically thrown away, aligning with our goal to make sustainable choices more accessible and convenient for our customers."

Additionally, last month, B&Q launched two in-store Energy Saving Hubs in Manchester, offering support to customers interested in enhancing their homes' energy efficiency. This initiative is in partnership with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and includes hubs at the Trafford Park and Cheetham Hill stores.

Asda Unveils New Food Waste Partnership with Olio App

Asda has announced a significant new partnership with the food-sharing app Olio, changing the way it handles "back of store" food donations. This new collaboration adds Olio to Asda's long-standing partnership with food redistribution giant FareShare.

Under this three-way partnership, surplus food that is just past its best before date but still edible will be collected from over 200 Asda stores when local charity support is unavailable. While FareShare’s local food charities will continue to be prioritized for donations, Asda aims to double the amount of food it redistributes.

The partnership will cover Asda’s superstores and supermarkets, with a separate program set to be trialed at Asda’s Express convenience sites. The addition of Olio as a food redistribution partner will result in more than 680 new donation slots being added to Asda’s back of store donation scheme in the coming weeks. This ensures that surplus food can be donated to those in need, even when charities cannot collect it.

Asda becomes the latest retailer to collaborate with Olio, following Tesco’s lead in 2020.

Sustainability news in retail

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