Iceland to go Plastic Free

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Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Busybee » January 16th, 2018, 10:35 am

It appears that Iceland is the first supermarket to vow to end plastic packaging within five years (of its own brand).

I welcome this move, I have recently tried to reduce the amount of plastic we use. Going back to boxes of washing powder rather than plastic bottles of liquid, refuseing straws in drinks, using a water bottle rather than buying bottles of water when out and about etc. I know it’s only small steps, but small steps all help.

I find it interesting that, what some people perceive as a downmarket retailer, is the first to announce this initiative rather than some of the more well known ethical retailers such as Co-op.

As an aside, Waitrose drives me nuts with its excess packaging on some of its fruit and veg.

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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby scullion » January 16th, 2018, 11:22 am

One of the reasons I like lidl is that you can chose a lot of the fruit and veg and without having to use a bag (I regularly see people bagging bananas - mad - they come with their own packaging).
I would love supermarkets to re-embrace the paper bag. (I used to buy far more grapes before they started being sold in plastic boxes I rarely buy them now).
I would also like to have my veg unwashed - they keep so much better with the dirt on.
It seems I would like to go back about thirty years!
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby StokeySue » January 16th, 2018, 11:56 am

scullion wrote:(I regularly see people bagging bananas - mad - they come with their own packaging).


I've a sneaking suspicion a lot of people think you are "supposed" to bag all fruit and veg before you habd them to the cashier

I've been meaning to email Morrisons, if you buy adequately packaged meat, fish or frozen food the cashier automatically puts it into another plastic bag, and you have quite an argument not to take it.

I am not surprised it's Iceland, but since virtually all frozen food currently comes in plastic film I wonder if they already have their eyes on replacements, and if so, what?

I miss the US style paper sacks Safeway used to give you, great for storing veg and many other things
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby suffolk » January 16th, 2018, 11:57 am

The farm shop fruit and veg were never in plastic bags, and at the checkout you were offered a strong paper bag or cardboard boxes that the stuff came in ... and a nice young man carried your purchases to your car for you :)
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Pepper Pig » January 16th, 2018, 12:05 pm

I was led to believe that the grapes, and other fruit, in boxes was a Health and Safety thing. Less likely to spill onto the flooor and cause accidents.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Meganthemog » January 16th, 2018, 12:41 pm

If fruit and veg needs to be bagged, why don't the supermarkets provide biodegradable bags such as the ones we use for food waste? They do this in Italy - makes such sense.
I have a very small freezer so haven't been into Iceland for some time - but I went in this weekend and was amazed at the fabulous range they had especially of fish at really good prices.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby PatsyMFagan » January 16th, 2018, 12:44 pm

The whole subject is being discussed at the moment on 'You and Yours' on Radio 4 ...
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Suelle » January 16th, 2018, 12:46 pm

StokeySue wrote:I've been meaning to email Morrisons, if you buy adequately packaged meat, fish or frozen food the cashier automatically puts it into another plastic bag, and you have quite an argument not to take it.


I'm not sure pre-packed fresh meat or fish is 'adequately packaged' when it's lying in the shop fridge. I've read a lot lately about the amount of bacteria on the outside of packaged meat, and the fact that you should never pack fresh meat or fish with other groceries to minimise cross contamination. And that you should regularly clean the bags that you do put fresh meat and fish in - either washing a fabric bag or using antibacterial spray on plastic bags for life.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby earthmaiden » January 16th, 2018, 3:27 pm

I think it will probably be easier for Iceland than some supermarkets, they don't have such a big range apart from frozen food.

It's great that at last the matter is being taken seriously. Just changing behavioral patterns to those such as in places like Germany where I believe packaging - necessary for carriage to the store - is left at the supermarket. My real bugbear at the moment is the totally unnecessary plastic coated gift wrapping paper and cards with plastic glitter etc. which seems to have crept in by stealth over the past few years and can creep out again. At Christmas I found it hard to get ordinary paper in the mainstream shops. I would like to see them sign up for paper next Christmas or at least reduce the amount (as no doubt there is a lot to use up). If everything was just recyclable it would be a start.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby TeresaFoodie » January 16th, 2018, 3:28 pm

This can surely only be a step in the right direction and hopefully this will urge other food produces to follow suit, however, I feel that a lot of unnecessary plastic waste is down to the consumer, e.g. When buying a bunch of bananas why do some feel the need to shove them in a plastic bag, same with a head of broccoli or similar. Why do I continue to notice that the likes of Sainsbury's, my most convenient supermarket, use excess packaging for the likes of say field mushrooms, four to a plastic tray which are also encased in plastic cling. They (my one anyway) have also stopped providing paper bags for loose mushrooms, whereas Holland and Barret either give out free paper grocery bags or offer the option of buying a cheap cloth shopping bag. I was out shopping for a two litre bottle of lemonade for my sister recently and found the aisle stuffed full of four bottles wrapped together in plastic wrap with a plastic handle, and as far I could make out it didn't work out much cheaper to buy four litre for litre, especially if you only went in for one. I also hate supermarket bags for life. Do supermarkets still give you a free one if you get a hole in one? Either way, the holey ones will end up in landfill so we're not much better off?

I might have a word with my amazing local spice shop, for consumer research of course, as to why they have to have reels and reels of plastic bags hanging on hooks suspended above their produce as opposed to paper bags you used to, and still possibly do in some places, get on hooks in greengrocers'.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby StokeySue » January 16th, 2018, 3:51 pm

Pepper Pig wrote:I was led to believe that the grapes, and other fruit, in boxes was a Health and Safety thing. Less likely to spill onto the flooor and cause accidents.

Well, the greengrocer and the street market still sell them loose!

I have some washable thin fabric veg bags to use instead of paper or plastic but I confess I don't use them much as the storage pouch is too small, easily remedied by repurposing another bit of packaging, I save any drawstring bag or similar for use when travelling mainly

Mine are Onya Way bags (say it aloud in an Australian accent :D )

But these look similar and cheaper
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Reusable-Foldable-Shopping-Friendly-Vegetable/dp/B01MXLY8NA/ref=pd_sbs_79_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=D08MMWGMSAAJWRWX9JFC

One of my walks will take in the new plastic free shop in Dalston
https://www.bulkmarket.uk/our-store
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Ratatouille » January 16th, 2018, 3:59 pm

Bizarrely our supermarket only sells the bio (organic) vegetables prepacked. For the rest there are biodegradable plastic bags.

I buy virtyaly all my fruit and veg in the market and it is either put straight in my basket if if it has to be in a bag they are paper and once the contents have been decanted at home the bags go back in said basket for next week. Cheese is wrapped in greaseproof paper as of old and Magali even wrties the name of the cheese on the outside.

We gave up buying bottled water years ago and I absolutely refuse to have coffe or any other drink unless offered in a proper cup or glass. This is not just to save the planet but I can't bear the feel of the things.

There is still lots more to do. Why for instance do magazines to which we subscribe come in plastic envelopes. Why does so much stuuff bought on line come in plastic on plastic hangers and in additional plastic bags? I got so fed up with M&S I recently sent them back a load.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby StokeySue » January 16th, 2018, 4:39 pm

Suelle wrote:
StokeySue wrote:I've been meaning to email Morrisons, if you buy adequately packaged meat, fish or frozen food the cashier automatically puts it into another plastic bag, and you have quite an argument not to take it.


I'm not sure pre-packed fresh meat or fish is 'adequately packaged' when it's lying in the shop fridge. I've read a lot lately about the amount of bacteria on the outside of packaged meat, and the fact that you should never pack fresh meat or fish with other groceries to minimise cross contamination. And that you should regularly clean the bags that you do put fresh meat and fish in - either washing a fabric bag or using antibacterial spray on plastic bags for life.

I'm sorry Suelle I do not see that hygiene is improved by a checkout operator, who has been handling packages of meat and fish and probably root veg all shift picking up the package and putting it into another bag which invariably flaps loose and which she invariably smooths with her hands

Of course food and much food packaging has surface bacteria on it, that's why one takes care in handling and preparation, and of course I launder my shopping bags. But I fail to see how putting a vac pack in which someone has just sealed two cod fillets for me into another bag does anything constructive
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby suffolk » January 16th, 2018, 4:46 pm

How are they going to store frozen meat in a freezer without wrapping it in some form of plastic? :?
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Zosherooney » January 16th, 2018, 4:52 pm

On the market in Bourbourg today I bought half a kilo of chicory and was given it in a paper bag.

I miss the US style paper sacks Safeway used to give you, great for storing veg and many other things
My Cats love diving into those on the bare floor, they go shooting across the other side of the room with another of them jumping on top of the bag. :lol:

I did hear that in Germany you can take the plastic packaging back to the s'market and it is up to them to dispose of it, it encourages them not to use it, wherever possible.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby dennispc » January 16th, 2018, 4:56 pm

suffolk wrote:How are they going to store frozen meat in a freezer without wrapping it in some form of plastic? :?


No idea, but sometime I wrap bread in waxed paper before putting it in the freezer.

Packaging Director was on tele this morning, he impressed me, mainly because he wasn't defensive.

We never launder shopping bags - bags for life or fibre ones.
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Suelle » January 16th, 2018, 5:49 pm

I didn't mean to imply in my earlier post that I thought double wrapping fresh meat would improve hygiene - just that there are areas of hygiene that many people don't consider, and that the outside of packaging was one of them. Till assistants handling your unwrapped fruit after your flimsily wrapped chicken might be another!
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Rainbow » January 16th, 2018, 10:14 pm

When I read the title of this thread I thought you meant Iceland the country :lol:

We don't have the shop over here, so I didn't think of that until I started reading the posts!
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Re: Iceland to go Plastic Free

Postby Ratatouille » January 17th, 2018, 7:41 pm

I did our supermarket shop today and it struck me that if you do shop for absolutely everything, or maybe most things there could well be problems.

I hardly every buy meat, or chicken etc in the supermarket. I just don't like things enased in platic. I do, sometimes buy fish it is sealed in a foil bag when you buy it, As for bags, I do wash my bags for life, my cooler bags and my, ok pretentious, sisal bags. If I buy veg then I reuse the bio bags in the bathroom bins - perfect size,

I just hate the plastic enveloped everything from loo rols to multibuys like 4 bottles od 500cl tonic water = why??
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