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  • BBC

Tesco launches UK’s biggest network of soft plastic recycling points

Tesco is introducing soft plastic recycling points to 171 stores in the South West of England and Wales and plans to roll out to all large stores nationwide.

The collection points will enable customers to return all their previously unrecycled soft plastic – regardless of where they bought it – including cling film, pet food pouches, and crisp packets. The soft plastic is then sent for recycling and will be used to pack items such as food, household, and beauty products.

The roll out follows a 10-store trial where customers returned more than 10 times the expected amount of plastic. The material has already been used to produce food-grade packaging for a selection of Tesco cheeses. The most common items to be returned during the trial were: bread bags, fruit and vegetable packaging, crisp packets, salad bags, and baby and pet food pouches.

Tesco’s director of quality, Sarah Bradbury, said: “It is an absolute priority to remove and reduce as much plastic as possible and ensure everything we use is recycled and kept out of the environment. Where plastic serves an important purpose such as reducing food waste, these new recycling points make sure that every piece can be easily recycled. Trials have shown they are popular with customers, so we believe rolling them out at scale will have a real impact.”

Tesco first started testing soft plastics recycling facilities in a 10-store trial in 2018, where it has collected 120 tonnes of plastic for recycling.

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