A survey by the Environmental Investigation Agency and Greenpeace UK tackled single-use plastic packaging used in supermarkets. It aims to reveal the amount of packaging that the manufacturers use for their products and to strategize the approach to reducing the use of single-use plastic packaging. The survey was conducted to 11 largest supermarkets in the UK regarding market share and grocery stores in the country with more than a thousand branches.
Aside from strategizing the reduction of single-use plastic packaging, the survey also intends to visualize how to solve the problem and probable improvements to the current packaging. Plastics proved to be a problem to the environment, especially to aquatic life. Marine animals accidentally ingest the plastic, especially those species that cannot distinguish it from real food.
Sarah Baulch, EIA’s Senior Ocean Campaigner, said that retailers need to take the initiative in reducing the use of single-use plastic packaging in their products. She also noted that the survey would recognize those establishments that actively participate in reducing their carbon footprint and those that need to improve.
Meanwhile, Elena Polisano, Greenpeace UK’s Ocean Campaigner also said that supermarkets need to make a move to reduce the use of single-use plastic packaging. By 2019, grocery stores should make sure that non-recyclable plastic packaging should no longer be in their stores and that they should also make an effort to shift to more sustainable solutions.
The organizations said that they shall release the survey results in the autumn. They also plan to conduct the survey yearly to promote improvement in packaging choices and to make sure that these establishments have initiated using recyclable plastic packaging. The study, which is a “challenge” to grocery stores, is also an eye-opener for retail stores to promote transparency through annual audits of single-plastic use and set targets to reduce plastic footprint.