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Sainsbury’s eliminates 15 tonnes of plastic waste as it opts for sustainable Halloween

Pumpkin and ginger soup: just one way to save the planet this Halloween (Image: Sainsbury's)

Halloween doesn’t have to be scary for the planet this year, as Sainsbury’s is encouraging customers to get the party started with a range of products containing less plastic – and an encouragement to compost all those left over pumpkins.

Sainsbury’s has significantly reduced the amount of plastic used across its range of decorative Halloween items by eliminating plastic lamination from its paper plates and bowls range. The retailer has also redesigned its trick or treat buckets to be made using paper instead of plastic and has swapped plastic packaging out of some popular items including spooky wreaths, signs and lights.

The move could eliminate as much as 15 tonnes of plastic from circulation, says the supermarket.

The retailer – which is Principal Supermarket Partner at COP26 next month – is also encouraging customers to squash food waste by only selling edible pumpkins. To help reduce food waste,  the retailer is asking  customers to make the most of the usually discarded pumpkin seeds and flesh from carving their pumpkins,  with a range of easy and delicious recipes

Stephen Johnson, Head of Technical and Ethical at Sainsbury’s explains: “As the UK’s love of the spooky holiday grows, it’s really important that we celebrate in a way that’s considerate for the planet. We’re committed to reducing plastic packaging across branded and our own brand products by 50% by 2025 and halving food waste across our value chain by 2030, which is why we continue to look at ways we can reduce our impact not only in our business but by helping our customers do the same.” 

The move is the latest in a string of initiatives from Sainsbury’s to help the environment by reducing plastic and food waste. Earlier this year, the retailer announced 520 of its stores now offer recycling for typically hard-to-recycle flexible plastics, including crisp packets and salad pouches – items not easily recycled by local authorities. 

Since 2013, the retailer has sent zero waste to landfill and currently partners with over 2,250 partners across the UK to donate surplus food.

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