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Waitrose expands unpacked range in response to customer demand

More unpacked products are now available at Waitrose

Waitrose is adding more products to its unpacked range in response to growing customer demand. 

The supermarket says packaging-free sales have grown by 9% over the last six months, while work to add Waitrose’s range of refillable items to its regular supermarket aisles has also seen sales rise by 20%. 

Sales of refillable frozen fruit and vegetables have grown by more than 50% over the last six months, while sales of detergent and washing-up liquid were more than 24% ahead, and sales of pulses, past and grains have risen by almost 8%.

In January,  Waitrose started to test the concept of adding unpacked items to its regular aisles rather than to a dedicated ‘unpacked’ area. The move saw sales of refillable items grow by more than 20% in the first 10 weeks. 

Today the supermarket is adding 13 new products to its range, including five types of loose tea, a number of dried fruit options, popcorn, and frozen peas and sweets. All are priced to be cheaper than their packaged equivalent in order to encourage shoppers to make the switch. 

Marija Rompani, partner and director of ethics and sustainability at Waitrose, says: “We are really beginning to find some momentum with customers demonstrating that this is how they might be prepared to shop with us in the future and we are especially encouraged by the response to moving the concept in-asile to make it more of the norm when visiting us. We know there is much more work to do, but the reaction of customers right now is giving us the confidence to continue moving forward with Unpacked.”

Waitrose Unpacked first launched in the supermarket’s Botley Road, Oxford shop in summer 2019 for an 11 week test. Now it has also been added to its shops in Wallingford, Abingdon and Cheltenham. Waitrose is a Leading retailer in RXUK Top500 research

Other retailers that have launched similar initiatives to remove packaging from ranges include M&S and Asda. 

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