Healthy snacking brand Graze has committed to reducing its plastic packaging by 80% over the next two years.
The brand intends to introduce a paper-based punnet later this year, replacing the current 100% recyclable plastic version made from 50% recycled materials.
Graze has worked with material suppliers and packaging manufacturers on a number of innovations over the past 10 months to identify an easily recyclable, sustainable alternative to plastic.
The Unilever-owned business said it had found its solution but was “still refining the current prototype to ensure sufficient barrier protection to maintain the delicious, fresh taste of Graze’s snacks – guaranteeing sustainability through the entire consumer experience, including minimising food waste”.
Once finalised, the paper-based punnet will be trialled with the brand’s direct-to-consumer customers to encourage feedback, before hitting grocery shelves in mid-2020.
Further developments in environmentally friendly packaging would then be rolled out by 2021, Graze added. It intends to ultimately eliminate plastic from its entire supply chain by exploring new material development, it said.
“This commitment takes the business one step further as it looks to remove plastic from its wider environmental footprint and opts for renewable alternatives,” the brand said.
The brand’s packaging development manager, Charlotte Mannings, claimed its pledge to cut 80% of plastic was “industry leading” – and said it had “no intention of slowing down until we reach our 100% target across the wider supply chain”.
The brand uses the 100% recyclable plastic material polyethylene terephthalate (PET) in its packaging, a material commonly used to make plastic drinking bottles. Mannings said: “We currently use plastic in our packaging because it provides the right level of barrier protection to ensure our products stay fresh from our factory to consumers. However, we have listened to our grazers and are looking for a more sustainable alternative that is fully recyclable and plastic-free”.
Source: The grocer