M&S Becomes First Major UK Retailer To Let Customers Bring Refillable Food Containers
The new scheme, which is being launched in M&S' Market Place on their food counters, will hopefully incentivise customers to bring their own containers instead of opting for the plastic-containing ones provided.
The British retailer will also offer 25p off each meal if you bring your own tupperware as an extra sweetener.
"M&S is aiming to encourage a change in consumer behaviour and reduce the use of disposable items on the high street, as new research by IGD reveals the food-to-go sector is set to grow by 26.4 per cent by 2024," a statement on the launch reads.
It adds: "M&S' Market Place concept is available in busy city centre stores and offers a variety of hot and cold lunch-to-go options, from rotisserie chicken and fish to freshly prepared salads. Over 70,000 people pick up lunch from Market Place each week, which is currently available in 23 stores including London Pantheon on Oxford Street, Newcastle, Norwich and Manchester."
As of April 2018, M&S already offers 25p off hot drinks for those that bring their own reusable coffee cup.
The existing containers on offer at Market Place are recyclable made from Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) certified cardboard with a plastic lid, but for M&S that's still too much plastic.
Paul Willgoss, Director of Food Technology at M&S, said: "Our priority is to reduce single-use packaging and ensure any we do use can be reused or recycled, as we work towards our 2022 target for all our packaging to be widely recyclable. Food-to-go is a growing market; so finding solutions in this space is an important part of our wider plan.
He adds: "Our Market Place containers are already widely recyclable, but we want to go a step further with the introduction of an incentive to encourage customers to switch to reusable containers."
As part of their plastic-free efforts, M&S claims to have already removed 1,000 tonnes of plastic packaging from across its business.
Good going M&S! Other supermarkets, take note.
Featured Image Credit: M&S