Sainsbury’s the latest to introduce easy-to-recycle ready meal trays

Sainsbury's trays
// Sainsbury’s the latest grocer to remove all black plastic trays used for chilled ready meals
// They will be replaced by natural CPET material by the end of the year, which is easily recycled
// Removal of black plastic to save 1003 metric tonnes per year
// Waitrose has already introduced a similar strategy

Sainsbury’s has become the latest retailer to replace hard-to-recycle black plastic trays used for chilled ready meals with a recyclable alternative.

Launched in all stores nationwide this week across Sainsbury’s most popular ready meals, the Big 4 grocer is replacing the black plastic trays with natural CPET, a form of recyclable plastic.

The new material will be rolled out across all chilled ready meals by November this year.

It comes after Waitrose announced plans to roll out a similar initiative for its range of ready meals earlier this month.

The majority of black plastic packaging is coloured using carbon pigments which cannot be picked up by widely-used recycling systems.

As a result, black plastic packaging can commonly end up in landfill.

By replacing it with CPET, Sainsbury’s chilled ready meal trays will be easy to recycle as the material is easily detectable at recycling plants across the UK.

Sainsbury’s said the new solution is set to reduce 1003 metric tonnes of hard-to-recycle plastic each year as it strives towards meeting its sustainable goals.

“This is a fantastic development in sustainable packaging innovation and we’re proud to be introducing our new, fully recyclable ready meal trays this week,” Sainsbury’s brand director Judith Batchelar said.

“Our commitment to reducing our impact on the environment is ongoing and the announcement today is an addition to the wider steps we have taken as a business this year.”

Earlier this week, Sainsbury’s also announced a trial to remove all single use plastic bags from its fruit and vegetable aisles, offering customers reusable drawstring bags for loose produce.

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