Exeter to play host to UK's first national circular economy 'hub'
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is investing £3.5m to create a new circular economy hub at the University of Exeter, which will be used to coordinate research and development across the country.
Banks urged to set time-bound targets to tackle deforestation
A new report has outlined how banks can take proactive steps to improve traceability and accountability of contributions to deforestation, as part of a first step to accelerating action towards a forest-restorative economy.
Banks 'have provided $1.7trn of unconditional support to plastic polluters since 2015'
Global banks have been accused of collectively providing more than $1.7trn to businesses across the plastics value chain between 2015 and 2019, largely without attaching environmental conditions to support packages.
#SustyTalk: London Waste and Recycling Board's Wayne Hubbard on the circular economy during Covid-19
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with an exclusive interview with the London Waste and Recycling Board's chief execiutive Wayne Hubbard.
Tesco removes one billion pieces of plastic packaging
In 2019, Tesco pledged to remove one billion pieces of plastic packaging from its UK business by the end of 2020. The UK's biggest supermarket has now revealed it has met the lofty target by working closely with suppliers and own-brand design teams.
Plastic-free festive food and re-planted trees: How are businesses working to make Christmas more sustainable?
Retailers and delivery firms have faced challenge after challenge in 2020, having to re-adjust ways of working to get essential goods to those in need amid lockdown restrictions. Yet many have also managed to ensure that Christmas won't be the most wasteful - or emissions-intense - time of the year.
In numbers: What is the environmental impact of Christmas?
Christmas is said to be the most wonderful time of the year - but it's also the most wasteful. With less than a week left until the big day, edie rounds up some of the most shocking environmental statistics for the season.
Ferrero unveils fresh commitments to sustainable packaging ahead of Christmas
After being criticised by green groups last year for producing heavy and hard-to-recycle plastic packaging, Fererro has joined new industry commitments aimed at reducing plastic use and improving recyclability.
New report details how businesses can help achieve SDG 12: Responsible Production and Consumption
edie has launched its latest SDG Spotlight report, looking at how businesses can transform to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) post-lockdown, with the latest focusing on Goal 12: Responsible Production and Consumption.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet waste management champions Marston's and UKWSL
With the 2021 Sustainability Leaders Awards approaching, this new feature series showcases the achievements of the 2020 winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: The winners of the Waste and Resource Management Project of the Year Award, Marston's and UKWSL.
SDG Spotlight: How Businesses Can Achieve Goal 12; Responsible Production and Consumption
edie's latest SDG Spotlight report, produced in association with Rio, looks at how businesses can transform operations, services, supply chains and strategies to help deliver Goal 12: Responsible Production and Consumption.
M&S expands plastic-free refill offering as UK lockdown lifts
Marks and Spencer (M&S) has launched its packaging-free refill offering for dried, ambient and frozen foods in a third store due to growing customer demand.
Huggies launches biodegradable baby wipes in step towards plastic-free goal
Kimberly-Clark owned brand Huggies has launched its first biodegradable product - baby wipes which break down in landfill conditions within 15 days.
PepsiCo targets 100% recycled plastic bottles in Europe
Food and beverage giant PepsiCo has set a new goal to reach 100% recycled content in plastic Pepsi bottles sold in its nine biggest European markets by 2022.
Government 'must hold businesses like Apple and Amazon to account over e-waste'
Electronics brands and online retailers have been "dodging responsibility" for their e-waste impacts - and new laws could help stop them from producing tech that is hard to repair or recycle.
City to Sea: 8 in 10 food-to-go giants failing to tackle single-use plastic
A survey of 20 of the UK's largest food-to-go outlets has found that more than eight in ten have introduced no policies on removing single-use plastic from consumer-facing operations this year.
Unilever on the circular economy and the net-positive debate: What happened on Day Three of Net-Zero Live 2020?
The third and final day of edie's Net-Zero Live 2020 saw hundreds of sustainability and resource experts gathering with the shared aim of accelerating ambition and action. Here, we round up the key takeaways.
Ribena redesigns plastic labels in bid for 'bottle-to-bottle' recycling
Soft drinks giant Ribena has redesigned the sleeves on its plastic bottles, in a move it claims will improve recycling rates and prevent downcycling.
WRAP: UK food sector 'needs to pick up the pace' on waste
UK businesses diverted £300m worth of food from waste this year, but the sector needs to accelerate action if it is to meet the Courtauld Commitment's environmental targets for 2025.
Boris Johnson urged to prevent e-waste mountain in Brexit planning
Poorly-made and hard-to-recycle electronics could "flood" the UK market after Brexit, resulting in an e-waste mountain, unless ministers act now to protect standards. That is according to a new report from Green Alliance.
Ellen MacArthur Foundation: Refillable packaging still accounts for just 2% of the market
Despite a swathe of successful pilot projects for plastic-free, refillable products, just 2% of the products sold by the world's biggest consumer goods firms this year came in reusable packaging.
Google launches phones and thermostats with recycled plastics
Google has achieved one of its plastics targets ahead of schedule, revealing that all new Pixel phones and Nest thermostats include recycled content.
HP extends cartridge recycling scheme to 68 countries
Printing and technology giant HP has extended its recycling scheme to 68 countries and territories after collecting more than 875,000 used printer ink cartridges.
Burger King teams up with TerraCycle for reusable packaging pilot
Burger King will bring reusable coffee cups, soft drinks cups and burger boxes to restaurants in the US and Japan early next year as part of a partnership with TerraCycle.
Supermarket and packaging giants call for UK-wide ban on degradable plastics
Representatives from the likes of Tesco, Waitrose, Aldi and the Co-op have signed an open letter to Ministers calling for a ban on plastics which are only degradable in industrial conditions with chemical additives.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet consumer engagement champions City to Sea
With the 2021 Sustainability Leaders Awards entry deadline approaching, this new feature series showcases the achievements of the 2020 winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: The winner of our Consumer Engagement Campaign of the Year: City to Sea.
P&G to launch refillable shampoo bottles in 2021
Procter & Gamble (P&G) will launch a refill format which uses 60%less plastic across several of its most popular shampoo lines in Europe next year.
Nestle outlines plans to bring UK's first commercial scale chemical plastic recycling plant online
Nestle has partnered with a chemical plastic recycling company with two commercial-scale facilities online in Spain, in the hopes of developing a similar plant in the UK.
Iceland trials plastic-free bread and potato packaging as Subway debuts cardboard salad boxes
Supermarket giant Iceland has begun trialling plastic-free packaging on products including potatoes and loaves of bread, in the same week that Subway confirmed plans to phase-out plastic salad bowls.
Bacardi to launch biodegradable spirits bottles by 2023
Alcoholic beverage giant Bacardi has said it will be ready to launch a plastic-free, bio-based spirits bottle that degrades outside of industrial conditions by 2023.
Britvic to switch to 100% recycled plastic bottles by 2022
The owner of Tango, Fruit Shoot and J2O has pledged to only sell plastic bottles made using 100% recycled content in the UK by the end of 2022.
Unilever's former chief sustainability officer to chair plant-based plastic venture
Unilever's former chief sustainability officer Jeff Seabright has been appointed as chair of a Cambridge-based scale-up that creates plant-protein-based alternatives to single-use plastic.
Asda opens 'sustainability store' with refill stations and plastic-free groceries
Asda has installed refill stations, reverse vending machines and a vintage clothing aisle to one of its busiest stores, to gauge consumer attitudes and logistical considerations to more sustainable offerings.
#SustyTalk: Cranswick's Jim Brisby on food waste prevention during Covid-19
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with Cranswick's commercial director Jim Brisby discussing how the company was able to exceed its food waste reduction targets - even faced with the challenges of lockdown.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet award-winning brewer Toast Ale
With the 2021 Sustainability Leaders Awards entry deadline approaching, this new feature series showcases the achievements of the 2020 winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: The winner of our SME of the Year, Toast Ale.
It's a shoe-in: Adidas unveils recyclable trainers as UGG reveals new climate and materials commitments
Adidas has started fresh pilots for a recyclable mono-material shoe made using recycled plastic, in the same week that UGG launched new social and environmental sustainability commitments.
Ikea unveils national buy-back scheme for used furniture in drive to become 'fully circular'
Ikea will start buying back customers' used furniture at stores across the UK and Ireland next month, in an effort to discourage "excessive consumption" and become a "fully circular" business by 2030.
Aldi to remove single-use plastic bags from fruit and veg aisles
Aldi UK & Ireland will remove single-use plastic bags from the produce aisles in all of its stores by the end of the year, the supermarket announced today (2 October).
edie launches new explains guide to creating a circular economy for electronics
Organisations looking to understand the benefits and opportunities of reusing and recycling used electronics can now access a free 'edie Explains' guide breaking down everything they need to know about preventing e-waste.
edie explains: Electronics and the circular economy
How can businesses create a circular economy for electronics of all kinds? What are the challenges and benefits of doing so? And how are policies affecting the e-waste changing? This free edie explains guide answers all these questions and more.
Blackrock's circular economy fund has raised $900m in its first year
BlackRock has revealed that its investment fund dedicated to accelerating the global development of a circular economy has raised more than $900m in its first year, growing from just $20m of seed funding from the asset management giant itself.
Tesco and Cranswick surpass food waste reduction targets
Supermarket Tesco and major premium food supplier Cranswick have both published new food waste data this week, revealing that they have exceeded their 2030 reduction targets ahead of schedule.
'Hypocrisy': Consumer goods giants accused of covert lobbying against stronger plastics legislation
Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Danone are among ten major food & beverage and consumer goods firms facing accusations of covertly lobbying against stronger plastics-related legislation, in spite of their public commitments to tackle plastics pollution.
Tesco partners with food sharing app Olio to tackle waste from stores
Surplus food from every Tesco store in the UK will soon be listed on food sharing app Olio, in a drive to reduce waste and help those in need.
Lego unveils $400m investment to drive low-carbon transition and single-use plastic phase-out
Toymaker Lego Group has unveiled a swathe of new sustainability commitments around plastics, waste, emissions and the circular economy, backed up with a $400m (£310m) investment package.
Asda trials reusable fruit & veg bags as Aldi rolls out plastic-free packaging
Asda has unveiled plans to remove single-use plastic bags for fruit and vegetables from stores, in favour of reusable alternatives made from recycled material, in the same week that Aldi confirmed a roll-out of cardboard meat trays.
Report: World could reach peak plastic production in 2027, risking billions of dollars for oil majors
Global oil majors are planning to invest $400bn in virgin plastic production within five years - but much of this investment is at risk as governments beef up plastics and climate targets, and as consumers continue to push for plastic-free products.
Lego becomes Ellen MacArthur Foundation member in bid to spur circular economy progress
Toymaker the Lego Group has joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for a three-year period, as part of its efforts to increase product reuse and recycling.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: Circular economy chats with Ball, Essity and CDSL
Episode 90 of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast delivers three exclusive interviews with sustainability leads at Ball Corporation, Essity and CDSL, for a snapshot of circular economy action during lockdown and beyond.
Report: Global fashion sector will emit double its Paris Agreement limit by 2030
The global fashion sector is currently generating more emissions each year than the UK, Germany and France combined, and will fail to align with the Paris Agreement without transformational change over the next decade.
How can businesses accelerate circular economy progress beyond Covid-19?
Earth Overshoot Day - the date at which humanity has used all available natural resources for the year - came almost a month later in 2020, largely as a result of Covid-19. But how can companies innovate and actuate to deliver lasting, holistic reductions in their environmental impact going forward?
Available on demand: edie’s Earth Overshoot Day webinar
edie’s webinar exploring the circular economy to mark Earth Overshoot Day 2020 is now available to watch on-demand, featuring expert speakers from the Ellen Macarthur Foundation, DS Smith and Toast Ale.
Retail giants prepare to launch TerraCycle's 'zero-waste' refill service in stores
Following successful online launches, retailers including Tesco in the UK and Carrefour in France are planning to bring TerraCycle's refillable model, backed by businesses like Danone and Unilever, to stores.
Morrisons planning to ditch plastic 'bags for life'
After removing 5p single-use carrier bags and trialling paper options, Morrisons is hoping to remove plastic 'bags for life' from all of its checkouts, should trials of alternatives prove successful.
Resale, repair and environmental labelling: Selfridges accelerates efforts to sustainably 'reinvent retail'
Selfridges has outlined a string of new commitments and pilot projects around sustainable materials sourcing, environmental communications and resource-efficient business models like repair, resale and rental.
New platform to help corporates forge circular economy partnerships
Environmental NGO BVRio has launched a new online platform connecting circular economy projects with corporates and impact investors, whose aim is to help small programmes scale-up and large organisations put sufficient finance behind their resource goals.
Microsoft vows to become a 'zero-waste' business by 2030
Microsoft has pledged to bring its direct waste footprint to zero within a decade, as part of a new resources strategy which will boost the recyclability of its devices and see plastic packaging phased out entirely.
Brits cut bottled water consumption by half during lockdown
The proportion of UK adults regularly purchasing plastic bottled water almost halved during lockdown, new research from YouGov has concluded.
Primark launches UK-wide fashion recycling scheme
Primark has installed take-back boxes for clothing, textiles, footwear and bags in all 190 of its UK stores, in a bid to reduce the amount of these items sent to landfill.
Vivobarefoot launches resale platform for repaired shoes
Shoe brand VivoBarefoot has launched an online resale platform for repaired and returned shoes, in what it claims is a world first.
In the Loop: Tesco and TerraCycle pilot 'zero-waste' refill service in the UK
TerraCycle has today (15 July) launched its zero-waste shopping platform in the UK in collaboration with Tesco, after a delay due to Covid-19.
Cathedral City launches UK-wide recycling scheme for cheese packaging
Cathedral City has partnered with TerraCycle to launch a UK-wide recycling scheme for its plastic cheese packaging, which is not currently collected by all local authorities at kerbside.
Aldi to halve plastic packaging use in the UK by 2025
Aldi UK and Ireland has pledged to halve the volume of plastic packaging it uses annually by 2025.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: The Plastic-Free July special
For episode 89 of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast, edie has assembled expert speakers for exclusive discussions on how plastics action is progressing throughout the Covid-19 crisis.
In numbers: Tracking public attitudes to plastics during the pandemic
Several businesses have published new research to mark Plastic Free July, including Veolia and Amcor. Here, edie rounds up the key findings, which act as a snapshot of public opinion on plastics in the context of Covid-19.
Kleenex debuts plastic-free tissue boxes as Mr Muscle unveils 100% 'ocean-bound' plastic bottle
Kleenex will remove the plastic opening from all tissue boxes by August 2020, parent firm Kimberly-Clark has announced in the same week that SC Johnson unveiled a Mr Muscle bottle made from 100% recycled plastic content.
British meat giants adopt net-zero vision as investors warn of $11bn carbon tax bill for global meat sector
Businesses representing 80% of the UK's meat sector have vowed to slash emissions and waste on a "farm-to-fork" basis, as investors have made fresh pleas for the global meat industry to accelerate decarbonisation efforts.
HP to cut plastic packaging use by 75% by 2025
Printing and electronics giant HP has committed to using 75% fewer pieces of single-use plastic packaging in 2025 than it did in 2018, as it revealed that its sustainable products and services generated more than $1.6bn (£1.27bn) in sales last year.
World Rainforest Day: Dozens of retailers commit to deforestation-free fashion supply chains
Ralph Lauren, Ted Baker, Sainsbury's and Asda are among a coalition of 45 major businesses jointly pledging to eliminate deforestation from their fashion supply chains, as part of a collaborative initiative coordinated by non-profit Canopy.
Report: Big-name brands failing to address plastic pollution crisis, despite improved pledges
A survey of 50 of the largest consumer-facing goods firms, including PepsiCo, Kraft Heinz and Kellogg, has found that companies are generally failing to take ambitious action on plastic pollution, despite lofty pledges to do so.
Hasbro launches UK-wide recycling scheme for plastic toys
Toy giant Hasbro has launched a UK-wide take-back and recycling scheme for toys, as part of its partnership with recycling firm TerraCycle.
WWF: Major consumer goods giants only sourcing 8% recycled plastics
McDonald's, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Keurig Dr Pepper and Procter & Gamble (P&G) collectively source 4.3 million metric tonnes of plastic annually, of which just 8% comes from recycled feedstocks.
Halt destruction of nature or suffer even worse pandemics, say world's top scientists
The coronavirus pandemic is likely to be followed by even more deadly and destructive disease outbreaks unless their root cause - the rampant destruction of the natural world - is rapidly halted, the world's leading biodiversity experts have warned.
John Lewis unveils sustainable womenswear collection
John Lewis & Partners has teamed up with luxury sustainable womenswear brand Mother of Pearl to launch a new sustainable clothing collection made from organic cotton and certified renewable wood fibre sources.
H&M reaches clothing take-back target early, collecting 29,000 tonnes of used garments
The H&M Group collected more than 29,000 tonnes of used clothing though its in-store network of take-back points last year, surpassing its 2020 goal to collect at least 25,000 tonnes a year ahead of schedule.
Business giants including Tesco urge ministers to end supply chain deforestation by 2030
Tesco, McDonald's and WWF are among the businesses and NGOs urging the UK Government to set a legally binding 2030 target to end deforestation in agriculture and forest product supply chains.
Wales unveils plans to ban single-use plastics from 2021
The Welsh Government will bring "restrictions" around certain single-use plastic items, including straws and cotton buds, into effect in the first half of 2021.
McDonald's to ditch plastic Happy Meal toys
McDonald's UK and Ireland will remove plastic toys from its Happy Meals in 2021, after customers campaigned for plastic-free alternatives.
Fashion industry must cut resource use by 75%, experts warn
A group of academics, businesses and thought leaders have penned a plan to help fashion firms align with planetary boundaries and address the climate and nature emergencies, headlined by a call to dramatically cut virgin resource use.
MPs relaunch probe into the UK's electronic waste mountain
The Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) has re-launched its inquiry into how policymakers, businesses and the public can collaborate to tackle electronic waste - the world's fastest-growing domestic waste stream.
Lucozade Ribena Suntory gets go-ahead for edible seaweed sachets in gym vending machines
Following a successful pilot at races in 2018, Lucozade Ribena Suntory (LRS) is trialling drinks housed in plastic-free, edible seaweed-based sachets in vending machines in gyms.
Aldi boss: We'll delist brands that don't act on plastics packaging
Aldi UK's chief executive Giles Hurley has written to suppliers of third-party brands, warning that they will be delisted unless they align with the supermarket's 2025 plastics packaging commitments.
Iceland slashes plastics packaging by almost one-third in two years
Iceland has posted an update to its commitment to remove all plastics from own-label product packaging by 2023, revealing that it now uses 29% less plastics in these applications than it did in 2018.
Zero-waste is the new black: How SMEs are disrupting fashion's waste crisis
In the second of a two-part feature, edie's senior reporter Sarah George spotlights the businesses working to combat fashion's growing waste problem by pioneering truly circular systems in what is widely regarded as one of the world's most linear sectors.
In numbers: The public's attitudes to plastics recycling and plastic-free packaging
As WRAP launches a new public awareness campaign on the recyclability and reusability of plastic packaging, edie explores the key behavioural barriers hampering a potentially circular economy for the material.
M&S expands refill scheme amid growing customer appetite for plastic-free groceries
Marks & Spencer (M&S) is set to extend its packaging-free refill offering for dried and ambient products such as coffee and pulses this month, following a successful trial.
Network Rail helps passengers to ditch three million plastic water bottles
By installing drinking fountains at its stations as part of the Refill campaign, Network Rail has helped to mitigate the use of three million single-use plastic water bottles over the past two years.
Lidl to use 'ocean-bound' plastics in seafood packaging
Lidl will begin incorporating "ocean-bound" plastics in packaging used to house 13 of its seafood lines next month, in what it claims is a first for a UK supermarket.
P&G signs deal for 200 million bottles' worth of recycled plastic
Procter & Gamble (P&G) has signed a deal to source 200 million bottles' worth of recycled plastic over the next five years, as it strives to halve the amount of virgin plastics it uses by 2030.
Science and storytelling: How Iberostar is engaging staff and guests with ocean issues beyond plastics
EXCLUSIVE: In the wake of 'Blue Planet 2', hospitality and leisure companies found themselves at the sharp end of the so-called war on plastics. But now that the sector's plastic phase-out is underway, how can it use its many touch-points to drive engagement across a broader range of environmental issues?
In numbers: Are businesses and consumers ready for the circular economy shift?
A shift away from linear 'take, make and dispose' models is widely touted as a key requirement in the transition to a net-zero, more resource-efficient world. But how prepared are businesses and individuals to make that shift, and what barriers are stopping circularity?
Lego to ditch virgin fossil plastics by 2030
Lego has vowed to eliminate virgin fossil-based plastics from its products within a decade, by investing heavily in recycled and bio-based materials.
Government unveils fresh funding for business fight against food waste
The UK Government has announced a new £1.15m funding pot for businesses and non-profits aiming to reduce food waste in households and supply chains through behaviour change.
Iceland trials swathes of plastic-free packaging for fruit and veg
Iceland is set to trial plastic-free and low-plastic packaging across 38 of its fruit and vegetable lines, in a step towards its ambition for all own-brand lines to be free from single-use plastics by 2023.
BT introduces fines for hardware hoarders in bid to reduce waste
Telecoms giant BT will charge wi-fi customers £50 if they do not send their routers back at the end of their contracts, in an effort to minimise its plastic and electronic waste.
Manufacturing giants slash food waste by 30%
The UK's largest food and drinks manufacturers have collectively reduced their food waste by 30% over the past eight years, on a per capita basis.
Seven top tips for driving behaviour change in the fight against single-use plastics
Changing behaviours is widely regarded as one of the most important, yet difficult, pieces of the plastics puzzle. Here, edie rounds up seven top tips for delivering a plastics strategy that engages all key stakeholders and delivers lasting impacts in the wake of the 'Blue planet 2 effect'.
Glasgow to phase-out single-use plastics within two years
Glasgow City Council has approved new measured to reduce plastic use across the local area, headlined by a commitment to phase-out single-use items by 2022.
Tesco teams up with Heinz to scrap plastic packaging on tin multipacks
Tesco has announced plans to scrap all tin multipacks housed in plastic shrinkwrap, in a move that will mitigate the use of 67 million pieces of plastic annually.
Report: UK's food waste mountain has shrunk 480,000 tonnes since 2015
Almost half a million tonnes less food was wasted in the UK in 2018 than in 2015, the latest figures from WRAP have revealed today (24 January).