// Morrisons pledges to become the first supermarket to remove plastic bags from all of the bananas sold in its stores
// New paper bands replace the bags that currently package the fruit
Morrisons has pledged to become the first supermarket to remove plastic bags from all of the bananas sold in its stores.
From today, bananas, which are the second most commonly bought product in Morrisons stores will be replaced with paper bands.
This will mean that 45 million single-use plastic bags, equivalent to 180 tonnes of plastic, will be removed from Morrisons stores a year.
It follows a successful trial for 12 weeks that has removed over two million pre-packed plastic bags to date.
The new strengthened paper bands, made from FSC certified paper, will ensure that banana bunches remain intact.
The bands will feature: Country of Origin; Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade and Soil Association Certification information; and, barcodes and their roll out will be completed in six months.
The ban is part of Morrisons drive to reduce plastic and revert back to traditional grocery packaging methods.
Once returned by customers, the bottles are collected, sanitised and can be reused for ten years or more.
Morrisons was also the first supermarket to reintroduce paper and string bags for fruit and veg, to provide sturdy paper carrier bags at checkouts and to refill customer containers at its Market Street counters, to avoid single use plastic packaging.
Morrisons banana buyer Elio Biondo said: “Bananas have their own packaging – their skins. They also grow in bunches which generally means they don’t need bagging together. So a simple sturdy paper band is the ideal alternative. In trials the quality of the bananas has remained the same, so this switch out of plastic is a no-brainer.”
Morrisons has committed to a 50 per cent reduction across its own brand primary plastic packaging by 2025.
Initiatives introduced over the last 12 months will remove 8,000 tonnes of unnecessary or problematic plastic each year while eighty-three per cent of Morrisons own-brand plastic packaging is now able to be recycled.