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Tesco Removes Bakery Bags to Save 33m Pieces of Plastic

Tesco is removing packaging from a range of its most popular bakery products in a bid to remove 33 million pieces of plastic each year.

The move, which is rolling out across its UK stores, will affect items such as loaves of bread, donuts and breakfast bakes.

Also removing the equivalent of 120 tons of packaging a year, the leading retailers in-store bakery bread lines will be sold loose, although paper bags will be optional for customers on request.

Donuts will now be sold in fully recyclable paper bags with a glassine window, while croissants and pain au chocolate will also be packaged in recyclable paper bags, each with a small plastic window.

“Many of our customers remember the days when bakeries used much less plastic and we want to go further and faster in removing plastic where alternatives are possible,” Tesco group quality director, Sarah Bradbury told The Grocer.

“We’re really pleased that we have been able to make this move across our in-store bakeries, as part of our plans to cut down on plastic without compromising on freshness and quality.”

The move comes as part of Tesco’s strategy based around the 4rs (remove, reduce, reuse, recycle) as it looks to encourage suppliers and customers to use less packaging and recycle more where possible.

Last month, the Big 4 grocer launched a trial with a selection of leading toothpaste brands, looking to save 680 tons of cardboard per year.

Partnering with brands such as Colgate, Oral B, Sensodyne, Aquafresh and Corsadyl, the initiative will scrap the cardboard box that toothpaste products are usually packaged and sold in.