UK supermarket giant Tesco has awarded its ‘Procurement Collaboration of the Year' award to two companies that work together to collect, sort, and re-process waste plastic material into new plastic carrier bags for the retailer.
Eurokey collects and sorts waste plastic from Tesco stores which is then shipped to Germany, where it is turned into new carrier bags by recycler Papier Mettler.
The new carriers, which following the introduction of a single-use bag charge in England now cost consumers 5p each to buy at the checkout, are made from Papier Mettler's Ecoloop film.
Robin Hughes, Tesco's procurement manager, said: “We are extremely proud to work with these suppliers to turn plastics from our business generated waste into our single use carrier bags. We believe that recycling materials back into products makes sense for the industry and the environment.”
Bill Aldridge, UK sales manager of Papier Mettler, said: “We are delighted to be working with Tesco to achieve optimal solutions regarding green packaging. As a result, Tesco not only offers carrier bags made of post-consumer recycled material, they have now gone one step further.
“By closing the material loop, Tesco carrier bags are now produced using their own plastic waste. An ideal situation for Tesco, Tesco's customers and the environment.
The Tesco bag project has also had the backing of plastics recycling body Recoup.
Stuart Foster, Recoup's chief executive, said the initiative was a “perfect example of how joined up actions between the supply and recycling chain can deliver efficient recycling of plastic resources in a transparent way.
“This is a true plastics recycling success story and an example for others to follow.”