// Tesco has removed more than two billion pieces of plastic in the UK since 2019
// The supermarket has removed 30 million plastic yoghurt lids and 42 million plastic forks from prepared salads and rice bowls
Tesco has removed more than two billion pieces of plastic from its UK business over the past four years.
The retailer has been working to reduce its plastic usage since it launched its 4Rs packaging strategy, known as Remove, Reduce, Re-use and Recycle.
In the past year alone, Tesco identified and removed 500 million pieces of unnecessary plastic, including more than 30 million plastic yoghurt lids and 42 million plastic forks from prepared salads and rice bowls, replaced by the option of wooden alternatives.
Tesco responsible sourcing director Kené Umeasiegbu said: “We all have a responsibility to take care of our planet and removing unnecessary plastic is an important way that Tesco can reduce its environmental impact.
“As well as taking action in our own operations, we want to work with the whole industry to continue to build on the progress we’ve made to Remove, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle more,” he added.
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Tesco has achieved a 55% reduction in scope 1 and 2 emissions by banning plastic wet wipes and removing 2 billion pieces of plastic from its stores, the grocery retailer has revealed.
To continue its efforts, the supermarket giant has published a new strategic report aimed to help retailers, industry and the government transform the UK’s approach to packaging.
This includes creating a level playing field when it comes to removing packaging in produce and ensuring a deposit return scheme is viable and sustainable.
Around 50% of plastic packaging in the UK is not currently being recycled.
In April, representatives from Marks and Spencer, Tesco and Ocado have all joined Compostable Coalition UK as members of its advisory board to help further its ambition to achieve full circularity for compostable packaging.
The board members are also signed up to the UK Plastics Pact.