// Anya Hindmarch is launching a new generation shopping bag in collaboration with Sainsbury’s and Waitrose
// The project, open to all supermarkets globally, will allow each partner to customise their own exclusive version of The Universal Bag in keeping with their own brand
Sainsbury’s and Waitrose have teamed up with designer Anya Hindmarch and Solent Group to create a new generation shopping bag that will tackle a range of sustainability challenges.
The move comes 14 years after Hindmarch and Sainsbury’s partnered on the ‘I Am Not A Plastic Bag’ campaign to raise awareness of the issues surrounding single-use plastic bags.
With Sainsbury’s and Waitrose being the first supermarkets to launch their own exclusive edition of the new Universal Bag, the scheme is open to supermarkets across the world who will be able to customise their own version of the bag in keeping with their brand.
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The Sainsbury’s edition will launch on December 2 across 334 stores and the Waitrose version will be available on January 26 in an inital 90 stores.
Both bags will be priced at £10.
The bag is made from 100 per cent recycled plastic and each step and material used in making the product has been fully certified under the Global Recycling Scheme.
Each bag is guaranteed to last ten years and features an innovative freepost returns pouch built into a pocket inside the bag.
To use it, shoppers can simply turn the bag into its built-in pocket which acts as a pre addressed envelope, and then post it through a letter box.
Hindmarch and the bag’s production partner Solent Group have committed to share the learnings from this project with other retailers on request as they look to make more progress in the use, reuse and recycling of shopping bags around the world.
Sainsbury’s chief marketing officer Mark Given said: “We are serious about reducing plastic and we know it’s an issue our customers and colleagues are passionate about too. It’s why we set an ambitious target to reduce our use of plastic packaging by 50% by 2025 and committed to making it easier for our customers to recycle while offering them more reusable options when they shop with us.
“It’s for this reason that fourteen years after we first partnered with Anya Hindmarch on the ground-breaking ‘I Am Not A Plastic Bag’ we’re delighted to join forces with her again on a brilliant new initiative, The Universal Bag. Reducing plastic and tackling the climate crisis can’t be solved in isolation, it requires collaboration and we’re proud to represent that message and inspire change as part of Anya’s new campaign.”
Waitrose executive director James Bailey added: “We recently took the decision to remove our bags for life as our research showed that they were increasingly being treated as a single use item, and this is part of our commitment to only use plastic where it can be recycled, reused or home composted by 2023.
“Plastic will continue to have its uses but we must not create any more of it unnecessarily. Instead, we must repurpose, reuse and make existing plastic materials circular – this is why we’re excited to be an early adopter of Anya Hindmarch’s new Universal Bag as it is a great example of circularity at work.”