Aldi is set to introduce fully recyclable sandwich packaging as part of a trial with its supplier Greencore.
The UK’s fifth largest supermarket is trialling a new sandwich box made from recyclable cardboard with a paper-lined film, rather than the plastic equivalent which is currently used in most sandwich packaging.
The new packaging does not impact shelf life and is being trialled on two sandwich products across a number of stores from September.
If the initiative is introduced across all Aldi sandwiches, this would remove 23.8 million pieces of unrecyclable plastic and 29.8 tonnes of single-use plastic each year.
Richard Gorman, plastics and packaging director at Aldi UK, said: “We are looking at every product we sell to see if there are ways we can remove plastic packaging or replace it with recyclable alternatives.
“The new sandwich packaging maintains the shelf life of the products, while allowing customers to easily recycle the packaging. Food to go is one of our most popular categories and we are confident this initiative will be well received by our customers.”
Aldi has been working closely with its suppliers in recent months to develop innovative ways to reduce avoidable plastics. These include committing to the removal of single-use plastic from all its own-brand tea bags by the end of 2021, as well as removing the outer plastic packaging of its own-brand tea products.
Last year, Aldi pledged to halve the volume of plastic packaging it uses by 2025. This will see it remove 74,000 tonnes of plastic packaging from products over the next four years.
The supermarket, which has been carbon-neutral since January 2019, is also on track to have all own-label products recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2022, and branded products sold at Aldi by 2025.