Aldi to remove plastic packaging from toilet roll packs

The packs could be rolled out nationwide if the trial proves successful 

Aldi will sell four-packs of Luxury Toilet Paper wrapped in paper in 174 stores across parts of the North East and the Midlands from next month. If successful, the packaging will be rolled out nationwide, saving an estimated 935 tonnes of plastic annually.

The move could then be extended to cover kitchen towels in due course.

Aldi UK’s managing director of corporate responsibility Fritz Walleczek, said: “Wherever we can find plastic packaging that can be removed or replaced with recyclable alternatives, we are determined to do just that.

“From taking shrink-wrap off vegetables to introducing paper and compostable bags, we are committed to ensuring that our packaging doesn’t end up as waste.”

Plastic crackdown

Aldi UK’s announcement builds on the retailer’s sweeping array of plastic pledges, which were unveiled last March as part of an update to its sustainability strategy.

Commitments include a ban on single-use plastic bags, with all 5p bags having been removed from Aldi UK stores as of January, and a pledge to ensure all packaging on its own-label is reusable, recyclable or compostable before 2022. Other pledges include reducing plastic packaging by 25% by the end of 2023.

Since setting these ambitions, Aldi UK has replaced more than 2,500 tonnes of hard-to-recycle plastics with recyclable alternatives. Key switches have included removing black plastics from several of its best-selling produce lines, including all fruit and vegetable, that will replace more than 300 tonnes of the hard-to-recycle material each year. Eliminating polystyrene discs from its own-brand pizzas and re-designing all packaging for its Ashfield Farm meat products have also been prioritised.

Aldi UK is also striving to increase the proportion of recycled materials in its own-brand packaging, and recently re-designed its range of plastic pasta pots to include 95% post-consumer recycled (PCR) content.

Last week, Aldi announced that is extending a trial of removing plastic packaging from fresh vegetable lines to parts of England, after a pilot programme in Scotland reduced more than three tonnes of plastic.

Matt Mace

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