Co-op unveils biodegradable tea bags in a bid to reduce plastic pollution
By NewsDesk - Feb 1st 2018, 08:47
British supermarket The Co-op has unveiled a fully biodegradable paper tea bag, which it says “could save nine tonnes of plastic every year from being dumped into household rubbish and compost collections”.
The convenience retailer’s own-brand 99 tea will be developed without polypropylene, which is an industry-wide method used to enable teabags to hold their shape.
The Co-op, which sells around 4.6 million boxes of tea annually (around 367 million teabags) has joined forces with its tea supplier, Typhoo, and Ahlstrom-Munksjö, specialists in sustainable fibre solutions, to develop the new method of heat sealing bags which will eliminate the use of the more widely-used plastic seal.
A new bio-degradable bag, which is due to undergo testing in February, could be on shelves later this year. Intended to be rolled out across The Co-op’s entire own-label standard tea range, it will be fully compostable in food waste collections after use.
Co-op Food CEO Jo Whitfield said: “Many tea drinkers are blissfully unaware that the teabag from their daily cuppa is sealed using plastic. Even though it’s a relatively small amount, when you consider the six billion cups of tea that are brewed up every year in the UK, we are looking at around 150 tonnes of polypropylene – that’s an enormous amount of accumulated plastic waste that is either contaminating food waste compost collections or simply going to landfill."
“A cup of tea is part of our national psyche, so we felt it was imperative that we fix the problem as soon as possible. We’re absolutely committed to reducing plastic in our packaging and want to ensure that tea lovers can enjoy a guilt-free brew.”
The Co-op aims to have 80% of its product packaging to be recyclable by 2020. Last year, the supermarket revealed plans to start selling food products beyond their best before dates in a bid to cut food waste.© FoodBev Media Ltd 2017
Nestlé Waters teams up with Ocean Legacy for plastic waste clean-up
11/07/2019 - 09:44
Nestlé’s bottled water division Nestlé Waters, owner of Perrier and Vittel, says it will team up with Canada’s Ocean Legacy Foundation to help to clean up plastic pollution.
PepsiCo's decision to sell smaller cans pays off
10/07/2019 - 08:19
Beverage sales rise as new packaging strategy helps company attract more consumers.
Pick n Pay trials nude fruit and vegetable wall
01/07/2019 - 11:23
Pick n Pay has launched a ‘nude’ fruit and vegetable produce wall – a dedicated plastic and packaging-free zone in 13 stores across the country as part of a trial to measure customers’ readiness to switch from pre-packaged food to loose products.
Zimbabwe's farmers smell the tea and coffee
14/06/2019 - 09:50
Farmers in Zimbabwe’s Eastern Highlands are smelling the tea and coffee.
Waitrose trials refill and bring-your-own containers scheme to reduce waste
05/06/2019 - 09:17
Waitrose has launched a new scheme where customers will be able to fill up or refill their own containers with a range of products as part of its ambitions to reduce waste.