Plastics Pact Roadmap unveiled as campaigners condemn high-street plastic action
A roadmap to help UK businesses tackle the global plastic waste problem has been published, on the same day that research has claimed that British supermarkets are still not doing enough to reduce their plastic footprint.
The challenges have been set, now business must rise to them
In the food business, Mission Possible should really be 'Mission Necessary'. We'll have to feed nearly 10 billion people by 2050. And we'll have to do so without destroying the natural resources on which food production depends.
Retailers to pay up to £1bn for recycling under waste strategy
Supermarkets, retailers and major drinks brands are set to pay tens of millions of pounds more towards recycling their used packaging under the government's new waste strategy expected to be published this month, the Guardian understands.
ATP unveils sweeping plastic phase-outs for Nitto Tennis Finals in London
The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) has unveiled new measures aimed at reducing the plastic waste footprint of its Nitto Tennis Finals event in London this month, in a bid to host its "most sustainable" tournament to date.
University of Leeds unveils plan to become 'plastic-free' by 2023
The University of Leeds and Leeds University Union have pledged to eliminate all single-use plastic items, including coffee cups, disposable cutlery and straws, from their operations by 2023.
Princes stops using export packaging recovery notes
Food and drinks giant Princes has funnelled around £750,000 into projects improving the UK's recycling infrastructure since the start of 2018, after refusing to use export packaging recovery notes (PRNs).
Royal College of Physicians achieves Carbon Trust Standard certification
The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has been recognised for recording a 30% reduction in its carbon footprint over a three-year period by becoming the first royal college to receive the Carbon Trust Standard certification.
Colgate to launch recycling scheme for oral health products
Health and beauty giant Colgate Palmolive has unveiled plans to launch a recycling scheme for empty toothpaste tubes, used toothbrushes and dental floss containers in the US and the UK.
Glasgow unveils ambition to become Scotland's first 'circular city'
Glasgow City Council has this week outlined a plan to become Scotland's first "circular city", by reducing its domestic and commercial waste footprint and implementing measures to encourage reuse and recycling.
Apple unveils 'greenest Mac ever'
Apple has this week launched its latest MacBook product which has been hailed as the 'greenest ever' by the tech giant.
Scotland's cities can unlock £1bn circular economy boon, says report
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has urged Scotland's largest cities to transform waste processes and operations to capture a £1bn economic growth opportunity highlighted by a new Zero Waste Scotland report, released today (31 October).
Latte levy: Was the Chancellor right to reject a tax on disposable cups?
A major talking point of yesterday's Autumn Budget was the Chancellor's decision to rule out a latte levy on disposable cups. Here, edie investigates the extent to which such a proposal could have provided a much-needed boost to the UK's coffers and helped policymakers drive a resource-efficient economy.
Tesco and Nestlé pledge to tackle impact of abandoned plastic fishing gear
Supermarket giant Tesco and consumer goods firm Nestlé have today (30 October) joined a coalition of businesses, non-profits and public sector bodies which have pledged to tackle the 640,000 tonnes of fishing gear abandoned in the world's oceans each year.
PepsiCo to use 25% recycled content in plastics packaging by 2025
Beverage giant PepsiCo has revamped its approach to plastics by pledging to use 25% recycled content in plastic packaging by 2025 and working with suppliers and partners to advocate for improved recycling infrastructure and policy across the globe.
Business giants join Ellen MacArthur Foundation's global commitment to eradicate plastics pollution
Business giants, financial investors, non-profit organisations and national Governments have vowed to eradicate plastic waste and pollution, as part of a new Global Commitment spearheaded by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
European parliament approves sweeping ban on single-use plastics
The European Parliament has overwhelmingly backed a wide-ranging ban on single-use plastics in an effort to tackle pollution in seas, fields and waterways.
Unilever partners with Veolia to create circular economy for plastic packaging
Consumer goods giant Unilever has today (24 October) agreed a partnership with waste management Veolia, which will see the companies work together to develop innovative solutions to the plastic waste crisis.
HP and Ikea join commitment to create global supply chain for ocean-bound plastics
HP and Ikea have joined a business consortium committed to incorporating ocean-bound plastics in new packaging and product materials by developing the first global supply chain for plastics that are seeping into the oceans.
Costa and Premier Inn unveil plan to phase-out plastic straws
Hospitality giant Whitbread has announced that it will begin removing plastic straws from its Costa Coffee stores and Premier Inn hotels from November 2018.
Plastic recycling industry's problems costing councils up to £500,000 a year
Major problems in the plastic recycling industry are costing local councils in England up to £500,000 extra a year, as they struggle to deal with the continuing fallout from import bans imposed by countries who are no longer able to take the UK's waste.
UK plastics recycling industry under investigation for fraud and corruption
The plastics recycling industry is facing an investigation into suspected widespread abuse and fraud within the export system amid warnings the world is about to close the door on UK packaging waste, the Guardian has learned.
IHG commits to global phase-out of plastic straws
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has announced that it will remove plastic straws from its global estate of more than 5,400 hotels by the end of 2019.
Tesco removes fruit and veg 'best before' dates
The UK's largest supermarket has revealed plans to remove "best before" dates from more than 100 of its fruit and vegetable lines, as it strives to meet a target to halve its food waste output by 2025.
Walkers to launch UK's first crisp packet recycling scheme
The UK's biggest crisp brand Walkers has unveiled plans to launch a nationwide crisp packet recycling scheme, following months of consumer protests against its hard-to-recycle packaging.
MPs call on fashion brand chief executives to disclose environmental impacts
In a letter to the chief executives of ten of Britain’s largest fashion retailers, including Primark, Next and Marks and Spencer (M&S), the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) has called for big-name fashion brands to disclose the full extent of their environmental and social impacts.
Why Co-op hasn't signed up to the UK Plastics Pact
EXCLUSIVE: The Co-op is one of the two major supermarkets yet to commit to WRAP's collaborative agreement to tackle single-use plastics, but the company's environment manager Iain Ferguson believes that an "enterprising" approach to innovation will enable the retailer to rethink approaches to packaging.
CitiPark discounts parking costs in exchange for plastic bottles
Car park operator CitiPark has announced that it will trial a reverse vending system in its flagship facility in Leeds, offering customers discounted parking rates for bringing in plastic bottles.
London Mayor urged to eliminate single-use plastic packaging from capital
Members of the Environment Committee have urged London Mayor Sadiq Khan to sign the capital up to WRAP's UK Plastics Pact, amid growing public concerns around plastic pollution.
Currys PC World pioneers home collection of used batteries
Currys PC World is set to start collecting end-of-life batteries from customers' homes when it delivers new appliances, as part of a campaign to stop Brits from hoarding used batteries.
Government unveils new £15m scheme to tackle retail food waste
The UK Government has today (1 October) announced that it will spend £15m on a new initiative aimed at redistributing almost £1bn worth of food waste from supermarkets, other retailers and manufacturers.
In numbers: the UK public's attitudes towards recycling
Last September, consultancy Britain Thinks surveyed more than 2,000 UK adults on attitudes across a spectrum of questions relating to packaging, recycling and the circular economy. With the survey results released on Friday (28 September), edie rounds-up the key findings.
Aldi continues phase-out of non-recyclable plastics
Discount supermarket Aldi is switching a range of its cooked meat from non-recyclable packaging to clear, recyclable alternatives in a move that is set to save more than 1,000 tonnes of plastic annually.
Tesco offers money for plastic bottles in reverse vending trials
Tesco has announced that it will trial in-store reverse vending machines for plastic bottles, as it calls on the UK Government to introduce a nation-wide approach to recycling.
Lucozade Ribena Suntory trials giant bottle-shaped bins to improve recycling
Soft drinks manufacturer Lucozade Ribena Suntory has announced a new partnership with facilities operator Sports and Leisure Management (SLM) to trial giant bottle-shaped recycling points at gyms and leisure centres in the UK.
Inside Unilever's plastics packaging strategy
EXCLUSIVE: Unilever's chief R&D officer David Blanchard has outlined the company's three-pillar approach to improving the recyclability of its product packaging, focusing on "less", "better" and "no plastics" solutions.
UK business giants commit to 'world-first' Roadmap to halve food waste
Some of the UK's largest supermarkets, hospitality firms and food and drink manufacturers have committed to a "world-first" initiative from WRAP to halve food waste by measuring and acting on wastage levels across a "farm-to-fork" approach.
Co-op switches to compostable bags as it pledges to eliminate single-use plastics
The Co-op has revealed it will swap around 60 million plastic carrier bags with compostable alternatives that can be used as food waste caddy liners, as part of a wider goal to "remove" single-use plastics from its product offerings.
Lidl to stop using black plastic fruit and vegetable packaging
Lidl UK says it will remove black plastic from its entire fruit and vegetable range by the end of the month.
UK Parliament to replace single-use plastic items with compostable alternatives
The UK Parliament will replace single-use plastic cutlery, coffee cups and lids, drinking straws and containers with compostable alternatives that will be treated at a specialist waste facility.
Report: Consumer demand for recycled packaging outpacing corporate action
More than half (55%) of the UK population believe that all plastic bottles should contain at least 50% recycled content, while the average proportion used by corporates currently stands at just 15%.
Lord Deben: Businesses must avoid 'knee-jerk' plastic phase-outs
Committee on Climate Change (CCC) chairman Lord Deben has urged companies to avoid making "knee-jerk" decisions on plastics packaging, warning that "reactionary" choices to consumer demands could lead to unintended environmental consequences.
Data-driven 'Plastics Cloud' launched to combat plastics waste
Software firm SAP UKI has unveiled plans to collect live data from supply chains as part of a "Plastics Cloud" pilot aimed at improving plastics purchasing and recycling.
Marston's achieves zero-waste-to-landfill goal
Pub chain and brewer Marston's has revealed that it has hit its 2020 zero-waste-to-landfill goal two years ahead of schedule, after sending more than three-quarters (77%) of its waste to be recycled this year.
Waitrose to use home-compostable bags in produce aisles and phase-out 5p carrier bags
Waitrose & Partners has announced that it will stop offering single-use plastic bags in its fruit and vegetable aisles and remove 5p carrier bags from its stores, a move that will cut its plastic usage by 134 million bags each year.
Single-use plastic bottles banned from half marathon in London
The capital’s first marathon event pledging to be completely free of “single-use” plastic drinks bottles is to take place in north-west London.
Meet the Sustainability Leader: TerraCycle, P&G and SUEZ - Sustainable Supply Chains
With entries closing this week for edie's revamped 2019 Sustainability Leaders Awards, this new feature series will showcase the achievements of the 2018 winners, revealing their secrets to success. Up next: our 2018 Sustainable Supply Chains winners, TerraCycle, P&G and SUEZ.
Iceland ditches plastic for pre-packed bananas
Frozen food retailer Iceland is switching the packaging for its pre-packed bananas from plastic to a paper band that is 100% recyclable and made from recycled paper, in a move that will save 10 million plastic bags from being used by the company annually.
SUEZ calls for extended producer responsibility system to spark 'waste revolution'
Waste and resource management firm SUEZ has called on the UK Government to extend its existing Producer Responsibility Obligation (PRO) framework and raise the cost of Packaging Recovery Notes (PRNs) to accelerate the shift to a circular economy.
H&M Foundation opens 'Garment-to-Garment' recycling plant in circular fashion drive
Fashion retailer H&M's charitable arm, the H&M Foundation, has this week opened a hydrothermal textile recycling plant as the company strives to become "truly circular" by 2030.
Drinks giants back calls to eliminate plastic packaging waste by 2030
Soft drinks firms such as Danone Waters and Lucozade Ribena Suntory have thrown their weight behind a study which calls for a zero-waste-to-landfill plastic packaging value chain by 2030.
Amey to work with prison to recycle more than 130,000 televisions annually
Waste management firm Amey has formed a partnership with HMP Dovegate in a bid to recycle more than 130,000 televisions each year while reducing reoffending rates.
Burberry to stop burning unsold products as part of resource efficiency drive
Luxury fashion brand Burberry has announced it will stop destroying products deemed unsaleable with immediate effect, just months after it was revealed that the brand had burned more than £28m worth of stock over the past 12 months.
'Snap Packs' and greener ink: Carlsberg unveils new packaging solutions designed to reduce waste
Danish brewer Carlsberg is set to reduce its global packaging waste by more than 1,200 tonnes annually, after launching new Snap Pack multi-packs for branded beers alongside a host of other closed-loop packaging renovations.
Veolia to trial electric bin lorries powered by energy-from-waste
Waste management firm Veolia’s vehicle fleet is set to include two fully-electric bin lorries, which will be charged with power derived from waste collected by the company.
M&S to phase out plastic cutlery in cafés
Marks and Spencer (M&S) will start phasing out plastic cutlery across its in-store cafés next month in a move it claims will remove 75 million pieces of plastic from its waste stream annually.
Hubbub launches second waste-cleaning boat made from recycled plastics
Environmental charity Hubbub has launched its second waste-cleaning boat made from recycled plastic today (30 August), with funding jointly provided by Tideway and Starbuck’s 5p paper cup surcharge.
Lucozade to trial edible drinks sachets to reduce single-use plastic at sports events
Beverage giant Lucozade Ribena Suntory is set to trial edible drinks sachets made from seaweed at two sports events next month, in an effort to gauge the consumer appetite for plastic-free alternatives to single-use bottles and pouches.
Meet the Sustainability Leader: The Coal Authority - Recycling and Resources
With entries soon closing for edie's revamped 2019 Sustainability Leaders Awards, this new feature series will showcase the achievements of the 2018 winners, revealing their secrets to success. Up next: our 2018 Recycling and Resources winners, The Coal Authority.
World Water Week: Valuing our natural environment
We all 'appreciate' a babbling brook and beautiful rivers and oceans, but what is the value of our natural environment? World Water Week provides us all with the perfect opportunity to reflect on the importance of water stewardship, which is not only about doing the right thing, it's also about generating real business benefits as a result.
In action: The Langham London hotel's aerobic digestion of food waste
In March 2018, the 5-star Langham London hotel embarked on a site-wide behavioural and infrastructural overhaul to divert food waste from landfill through an innovative recycling system introduced by Orca Enviro Systems.
'In action': edie launches new case study series to highlight best-practice sustainability projects
edie has launched a new case study series focusing on successful projects that have helped end-user companies reduce key environmental footprints.
Global food waste set to rise a third by 2030 without ‘aggressive’ action
The amount of food wasted each year worldwide is set to rise by a third by 2030 without "urgent and aggressive" action from nations and corporates.
Greene King phases out plastic straws in favour of compostable alternative
Pub chain Greene King has announced that it will stock compostable straws across its entire portfolio of 1,750 UK pubs as it strives to meet a commitment of sending zero waste to landfill by 2020.
UK's largest recycling centre opens in Scotland
The UK's largest recycling centre has officially opened in Livingston, Scotland, on the same day that waste experts called on the UK Government to scrap weight-based recycling targets post-Brexit.
‘Unprecedented’ public support for tax reforms to tackle plastic waste
An unprecedented number of respondents to a UK Government consultation examining plastic waste have called for the implementation of increased rates of tax on virgin plastics, coupled with tax breaks for manufacturers using post-consumer recycled (PCR) content.
Unintended consequences: Could the plastics phase-out lead to sustainability peril for businesses?
EXCLUSIVE: With the war on plastic becoming one of the hottest topics in the sustainability sphere, corporates rushing to make plastic-reduction pledges in a bid to appease customers are at risk of making changes which could lead to unintended consequences.
ACE UK partners with Cornwall Council to boost beverage carton recycling rates
The Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment (ACE UK) has partnered with Cornwall Council to open a set of new recycling banks for food and drink cartons and paper coffee cups across the region, in a bid to boost recycling rates for the items.
Meet the Sustainability Leader: G&P Group Holdings - Waste Management and Reduction 2018
With entries now open for edie's revamped 2019 Sustainability Leaders Awards, this new feature series will showcase the achievements of the 2018 winners, revealing their secrets to success. Up next: our 2018 Waste Management winners, G&P Group Holdings.
edie at 20: How global resource efficiency has transformed since 1998
As part of a running content series to mark edie's 20th anniversary as a sustainable business media brand, we have produced an infographic which explores the changing ways in which businesses and nations have transformed the way they consume the world's resources over the past two decades.
Co-op partners with The Real Junk Food Project to cut food waste
The Co-op has announced that it has started a new partnership with food redistribution scheme The Real Junk Food Project, in a bid to reduce its food waste output while tackling hunger in Leeds.
Landsec partners with big-name retailers on shopping centre refill scheme
Property developer Landsec has launched a new water bottle refill scheme in its shopping centres, partnering up with a host of big-name retailers and food and beverage brands in a bid to drive customers away from single-use plastic bottles.
Lidl launches 'Too Good to Waste' fruit and veg discount box to cut back on food waste
In a bid to cut back on food waste, Lidl UK has launched a trial run selling boxes of fruit and vegetables no longer considered at their best at a discount price.
Tesco becomes first supermarket to stock cans of water
In the latest move to cut back on the number of plastic products entering circulation, Tesco has become the first supermarket to stock and offer cans of water.
Collection and content: How can councils address the 'smorgasbord' of plastics to boost recycling?
Councils have urged manufacturers to scrap a "smorgasbord" of plastics used for food packaging in order to increase recycling rates, although the industry has suggested that the lack of consistency of council recycling collection systems also needs addressing.
Veolia to recycle 120 million coffee cups in 2019
Waste management firm Veolia has announced it will increase the number of coffee cups it collects for recycling annually by 300%, by working with retailers such as Costa, Starbucks and McDonald's on in-store collection services.
Crunch time for Walkers over non-recyclable crisp packets
The UK's biggest crisp brand, Walkers, will come under pressure this week to explain why it is helping to fuel the plastic waste littering the streets and seas by producing more than 7,000 non-recyclable crisp packets every minute.
Unilever launches toiletry range with 100% recycled packaging in UK
Consumer goods giant Unilever has launched a range of beauty products housed in 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic bottles in the UK, following the success of the "eco-beauty" line in the US.
The burning question: Can Burberry spark a resource revolution in the fashion industry?
EXCLUSIVE: In contrast to the public uproar over the burning of almost £30m worth of stock, luxury fashion brand Burberry is on a journey to "foster business models" that redefine waste and embed the circular economy into an industry riddled with "fast fashion" discrepancies.
Allow nuclear waste disposal under national parks, say MPs
Highly radioactive nuclear waste could be permanently buried under national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty (AONBs), under government plans backed by a committee of MPs.
Sustainable shopping: How are UK supermarkets tackling plastic pollution?
Whether it's products containing microbeads, items sold in unnecessary single-use packaging, or consumers opting for plastic bags at the checkout, Britain's supermarkets are at the epicentre of the plastics problem. Here, edie examines the new actions retailers are taking to reduce avoidable plastic waste.
Delta Air Lines to recycle 158 tonnes of old uniforms in textile diversion scheme
Delta Air Lines has announced that it will send more than 158 tonnes of its old uniforms to be upcycled or recycled in what it claims will be one of the largest textile diversion schemes by a single US-based corporation.
Starbucks' nationwide 5p cup charge to fund Hubbub's waste-cleaning boat
Starbucks has this week introduced its 5p paper cup charge to all 950 UK stores, with the proceeds of the charge to be used by environmental charity Hubbub to fund a plastic boat set to clean up waste in the Thames.
Canary Wharf Group commits to becoming world's first plastic-free commercial centre
Canary Wharf Group (CWG) has pledged to become a plastic-free community across its 16.5 million sq. ft London real estate, in a bid to help businesses and the wider community reduce the amount of single-use plastics in circulation.
Coca-Cola offers 50% discounts at major UK theme parks in exchange for plastic bottles
Coca-Cola Great Britain is offering 50% discounts to UK attractions such as Thorpe Park, Alton Towers and Legoland in exchange for used plastic drinks bottles, in a bid to change consumer attitudes towards recycling.
UK's plastic waste may be dumped overseas instead of recycled
Millions of tons of waste plastic from British businesses and homes may be ending up in landfill sites across the world, the government's spending watchdog has warned.
Asda joins Microfibre Consortium to reduce environmental impact of clothing
UK supermarket Asda has joined a consortium aimed at understanding how microfibre shedding occurs, in order to implement projects aimed at reducing how much volume seeps into the ocean.
How Coca-Cola is engaging policymakers and the public to combat plastics pollution
EXCLUSIVE: The head of sustainability at the world's largest independent Coca-Cola bottler believes the next 12 months are a "great opportunity" to influence policy to reform Producer Responsibility Obligations and implement an effective, nationwide deposit return system for plastics.
Ikea to ban plastic straws in all its UK stores and restaurants by October 2018
Global furniture retailer Ikea has announced (July 16) that it will stop selling packs of single-use plastic straws in its UK and Ireland stores later this year, as part of its commitment to eliminate all single-use plastics from its global product range by 2020.
Morrisons trials in-store deposit return system for plastic bottles
Supermarket giant Morrisons has launched a trial of an in-store deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, in a bid to minimise its plastic output and encourage customers to recycle.
Waste incineration set to overtake recycling in England, Greens warn
England is on the brink of burning more of its rubbish in incinerators than it recycles for the first time, according to a new analysis.
Starbucks to introduce 5p paper cup charge across all UK stores
Starbucks will add a 5p surcharge to paper cups in its 950 stores across the UK later this month, as well as vowing to eliminate single-use plastic straws from its global operations by 2020.
Cranswick launches redistribution programme to combat food poverty in Hull
Major premium food supplier Cranswick has launched a new collaborative initiative which will see it use a food sharing app to "go beyond redistribution" in its bid to combat food waste and hunger issues in Hull.
Iceland tests customer appetite for tackling plastic waste with paper bag trials
Frozen food giant Iceland has this week launched a paper bag trial, in a bid to reduce its plastics output and find out whether customers are willing to ditch plastic carrier bags at the checkout.
ASOS launches circular fashion training programme
Online fashion retailer ASOS has this week launched a new sustainable fashion training programme for designers, in a bid to minimise the environmental impact of its operations and stock more closed-loop clothing and accessories.
Plastic waste: edie report explores 10 gamechangers tackling the issue
With Britain's plastics revolution continuing to gather pace, edie has today (27 June) published a new insight report which investigates some of the game-changing developments and sustainable solutions to the global plastics problem.
Wetherspoon and FareShare partner up to tackle food waste
Pub chain J D Wetherspoon has teamed up with food redistribution platform FareShare in a bid to divert more of its food waste from landfill.
Food and drink giants collaborate to improve 'on-the-go' recycling in Leeds
A string of 18 corporations from the food and drink and packaging sectors, including Asda, Co-op and Marks and Spencer (M&S), have teamed up to launch a scheme aimed at boosting recycling rates for "on-the-go "packaging.
M&S, Sainsbury’s and Tesco team up on closed-loop solution for black plastics
Supermarket giants Tesco, Sainsbury's and Marks & Spencer (M&S) have collaborated to introduce a solution for hard-to-recycle black plastic that places recycled content into food-grade packaging.
Morrisons rolls out paper bags in produce aisles to cut plastic waste
Supermarket chain Morrisons has announced that it will stop offering single-use plastic bags in its fruit and vegetable aisles, in a bid to cut its plastic output by 150 million bags each year.
How close is London to achieving a circular economy?
EXCLUSIVE: A year after the launch of a route map outlining how the collective actions of the private sector could catalyse a transition to the circular economy in London, edie investigates how much progress has been made to close the loop.