11 March, 2019

Getting Tough on Plastic in Every Possible Way

Reducing our own use of plastic, replacing it with planet friendly alternatives and designing it out of our products is just the start of the story. Our Plastic Take-Back scheme builds on our customers’ good will to do the right thing and gives their efforts a helping hand.

The initiative is supported by our Food Managing Director, Stuart Machin. Initially launched in eight of our stores, it helps customers return plastic they currently can’t recycle at home. Customers can bring back everything from crisp packets, films and sachets, to pouches, bread bags and black rigid trays. Plans are in place to see the scheme go nationwide by the end of the year.

We’re also working with the waste education social enterprise, Wastebuster, to win the battle of hearts and minds in schools. This sees us teach children about the importance of recycling and reducing plastic waste. What better way to inspire children to make a positive difference in their homes and communities?

Laura Fernandez is our Senior Packaging Technologist at M&S. As such, she’s heavily invested in the scheme and takes up the story:

‘It had to be a truly circular project. The plastic waste collected will be given a new life by melting it down to create flat boards made of 100% recycled plastic. These will be used to manufacture more bins to extend the project to further stores, as well as shop fittings, furniture and playground equipment for schools.

‘Customers often don’t know how best to recycle certain types of plastic or where it goes after being collected by local councils. We’re on a mission to provide a greater awareness of landfill avoidance and plastic recyclability while, ultimately, helping our customers to give plastic a new purpose and support a truly circular economy.’

Inside M&S