Suppliers and wholesalers must help retailers to meet increasing demand to reduce the amount of plastic packaging in store, retailers have told RN.   

The comments come following government proposals to create plastic-free aisles with loose food as part of its 25 Year Environment Plan, published last week.  

Sarj Patel, of Pasture Lane Stores in Loughborough, Leicestershire, said wholesalers need to reevaluate how they sell cases of beer, cans, jam and milk.

“Two-pack milk currently comes in plastic wraps, but I’m sure they could sell singles in cardboard boxes. Looking at the biscuit aisle, most products are wrapped in boxes and other categories need to follow,” he said. 

Chris Wardle, owner of a Premier in Norton-in-the-Moors, Staffordshire, said suppliers and wholesalers could do better when it comes to the amount of plastic used for wrapping food and crates. 

“It is all down to price and whether using alternative materials would cost retailers more. If it was a government-led initiative and prices were maintained, it would work,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Iceland revealed on Tuesday that it plans by the end of 2023 to become the first major retailer to eliminate plastic packaging from all its own-brand products.