Boots scraps plastic pharmacy bags for compostable bags

Boots plastic recycling Richard Bradley
Boots has plans to reduce its plastic use by around 1300 tonnes each year
// Boots begins switching plastic pharmacy bags to 100% compostable bags
// It aims to switch 10 million plastic bags for compostable materials by March 2020

Boots has begun switching its plastic pharmacy bags to 100 per cent compostable bags using potato starch.

The health and beauty retailer aims to switch over 10 million traditional plastic prescription bags to compostable material by March 2020.

The new bags can also be used as a bin liner for food waste.


“This is yet another positive step forward in our focus on sustainability throughout our 170 year history, and the current journey we are on to reduce the impact our business has on the environment,” Boots UK pharmacy director Richard Bradley said.

“At the start of this year, our customers told us they didn’t want to receive their medicines in plastic bags and we have been testing alternative materials for some time,” he said.

“We are thrilled that our new compostable bags allow us to continue to deliver medicines to patients in a way that is safe, clean and dry, whilst helping to reduce our reliance on conventional plastic.”

Boots also has plans to reduce its plastic use by around 1300 tonnes each year. This includes removing 149 tonnes of plastic from own-brand Christmas gift ranges; reducing the plastic packaging used in its deliveries by 76 per cent saving 136 tonnes of plastic every year, and going 100 per cent plastic free in online deliveries by the end of 2020.

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  1. What about when you do an order in store and collect it?? I ordered a burt’s Bees lip salve and it came in an a4 jiffy with thick bubble lining Grrrrrr

  2. Can we put the new compostable bags in our back garden compost bin or do they need industrial composting? If we put them in the back garden bin, how long will it take to decompose?

  3. Does this conform to European Standards EN13432 for home compostability? If so it should completely degrade after 12 weeks. Also, it may be worth considering that home compostable film contain a very high percentage of copolyester or PBAT (this is a butanediol and terephthalate acid, adipic acid) will Boots be advising their customers of what is actually in this so-called eco friendly plastic? Along with their paper bags this is another false eco solution – more greenwashing! Trust Boots ?


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