Asda opens sustainability store with ‘greener price’ promise

The supermarket says loose and unwrapped products will not cost more than wrapped equivalents

Net Hero Podcast

Asda has opened a new sustainability trial store and pledged customers will not pay more for greener options with a new plastics reduction strategy.

Under its ‘Greener at Asda Price’, loose and unwrapped fruits and vegetables will not cost more than wrapped equivalents.

The store is designed to help shoppers reduce, reuse and recycle “with ease” and the numerous initiatives being trialled at Middleton are estimated to save around one million pieces of plastic every year.

It features 15 refill stations, offering customers a selection of more than 30 household staples sold in refillable format, including a selection of cereals, tea bags, coffee beans, shampoo, conditioner, hand wash and shower gel.

The store also has 53 fresh produce lines in total, sold in loose and unwrapped format, in addition to its plants and flowers sold either unwrapped or with a paper wrapping.

Consumers will also be able to bring items that are difficult to recycle in kerbside collections such as crisp and biscuit packets, plastic toys, cosmetic containers and toothpaste tubes.

In addition, the store will showcase sustainable fashion lines, including clothing made from recycled polyester and coat hanger-less denim.

Asda will use the store to test and learn which elements of its new offer appeal most to customers and can be developed at scale to be potentially rolled out to more locations in 2021.

It has also made a commitment to generate zero carbon emissions by 2040, reduce waste by 50% and have a net regenerative impact on nature no later than 2050.

In 2018, it set a weight-based target of 15% reduction in plastic packaging by 2021, with the company removing more than 9,300 tonnes of plastic from their own brand products since then.

It has now introduced an additional commitment to remove three billion pieces of plastic from own-brand products by 2025 and committed to introducing more than 40 refillable products by 2023 as well as invest in 50 closed-loop and circular projects by 2030.

CEO and President Roger Burnley said: “Today marks an important milestone in our journey as we tackle plastic pollution and help our customers to reduce, reuse and recycle. We have always known that we couldn’t go on this journey alone so it is fantastic to work in tandem with more than 20 of our partners and suppliers who have answered the call to test innovative sustainable solutions with us.

“This is an issue that matters greatly to our customers – our own insight tells us that more than 80% believe that supermarkets have a responsibility to reduce the amount of single-use plastics in stores. We want to give them the opportunity to live more sustainably by offering them great product choices and value, underpinned by a promise that they won’t pay more for greener options at Asda.”