Consumers who purchase items from tea brand, teapigs; British supermarket, Iceland; and Dutch retailer, Ekoplaza will see the world’s first “plastic-free” Trust Mark now displayed on goods.
The brainchild of environmental campaign group A Plastic Planet, the Trust Mark will be awarded to food and drink products that are packaged without plastic.
Designed to sit clearly on the front of the pack, the Trust Mark will instantly inform and empower consumers to make plastic-free choices. The confusion around different logos, and abundance of plastic packaging in the supermarkets means that those with innovative packaging will be nice and easy to spot.
Campaigners say the move will lead to a radical reduction in the amount of single-use plastic packaging food and drinks.
A Plastic Planet co-founder Sian Sutherland explained: “Now we all know the damage our addiction to plastic has caused, we want to do the right thing and buy plastic-free. But it is harder than you think and a clear no-nonsense label is much needed.
“Our Trust Mark cuts through the confusion of symbols and labels and tells you just one thing – this packaging is plastic-free and therefore guilt-free. Finally shoppers can be part of the solution not the problem.”
The first products to feature the Trust Mark include Iceland’s own- brand eggs, cottage pie and vegetable burgers, delivering a reduction in plastic usage of over 600 tonnes per year.
Other Iceland own-label foods expected to switch to non-plastic packaging during summer 2018 will include soft fruit, mushrooms and potatoes.
Dutch supermarket chain Ekoplaza is rolling out the Trust Mark across 74 outlets across the Netherlands with the aim to have each store representing the mark as well as featuring it on selected products of the Ekoplaza own brand by the end of the year.
The recent revelation that 96% of Britain’s teabags contain plastic, caused huge shockwaves. British tea brand teapigs, who do not use plastic in their teabags, have been one of the early adopters of the “plastic- free” trust mark.
Teapigs co-founder Louise Cheadle said: “We’re really pleased to add A Plastic Planet’s Trust Mark to our packaging. A lot of tea drinkers have been surprised to learn that many teabags contain plastic.
“Our tea ‘temples’ have always been plastic free and our clear inner bags (that keep the tea nice and fresh) are made from Natureflex which looks like plastic but is made from wood pulp. The trust mark will make it easy for consumers to make the right plastic-free choices.”
Trust Mark-accredited packaging will include materials such as carton board, wood pulp, glass, metal and certified-compostable biomaterials.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea