M&S trials refillable cleaning products to slash packaging waste

Customers have to pay an initial £2 deposit for the reusable bottle, which can be returned to the store after use and upon return, they will receive a £2 voucher that can be redeemed against a second purchase in the M&S Refillable range

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M&S has launched a trial of its own-brand refillable cleaning and laundry products as part of the supermarket’s commitment to slash packaging waste.

Customers can choose from eight pre-filled, home-care products, including cleaning sprays, laundry detergents, fabric conditioners and washing up liquids as part of M&S Refillable.

They will have to pay an initial £2 deposit for the reusable bottle, which can be returned to the store after use and upon return, they will receive a £2 voucher that can be redeemed against a second purchase in the M&S Refillable range.

All returned bottles will be cleaned and refilled before returning to the stores to be sold again, with cleaning spray and washing-up liquid bottles consisting of a fully recyclable spray trigger or pump that can be recycled at home or returned to the store.

According to M&S, customers are already “responding well” to the trial, with the most popular product, i.e. the citrus washing up liquid, almost equalling sales of its packaged equivalent.

Delivered in partnership with Re, M&S Refillable will initially be available in the supermarket’s recently-opened Stevenage store and in Bluewater, before being extended to an additional four stores – Stratford City, Hedge End, Aintree and York Vangarde Retail Park – over the summer.

Lucinda Langton, Head of Sustainability at M&S Food said: “At M&S, we want to help our customers live more sustainably by transforming how we sell our products. We know they care deeply about reducing plastic so we’re taking a test and learn approach to find innovative solutions..

“Our homecare trial builds on our refillable and packaging-free Fill Your Own concept, and both are important parts of our strategy to reduce plastic and packaging. Fill Your Own has already been hugely popular – showing there is high demand for refillable great value options – and if customers love M&S Refillable just as much, we’ll be rolling it out to more stores.”

M&S has committed to remove one billion units of plastic food packaging by 2027 and has already removed 75 million units from across its food business in the past year.

The supermarket also aims to become a fully net zero business across its products and supply chain by 2040.