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Waitrose trialling new environmentally friendly packaging for organic tomatoes

Waitrose is trailing a new environmentally friendly pack that they hope will help bring the end of plastic packaging for organic tomatoes.

A new form of non-plastic punnet which uses tomato leaves is being experimented to help package tomatoes.

Waitrose created the new packaging by combining dried tomato leaf and recycled cardboard pulp.

Waitrose will use the newly designed punnets for its Duchy Organic cherry tomatoes and baby plum tomatoes in selected branches.

The retailer will expand the use of non-plastic punnet for these products in other branches in 2018 based on the success of the trial.

According to Waitrose, the punnets are expected to avoid the use of 3.5 million plastic trays per annum.

Waitrose also uses boxes partly made from pulses for red lentil pasta and green pea pasta, helping to reduce the use of virgin tree pulp by 15% and greenhouse gas emissions by 20%.

Waitrose fresh produce head Nicola Waller said: ‘‘We are determined to reduce our use of plastic across our business.

‘‘This builds on our commitment to ensure that all our own-label packaging is widely recyclable (using the widely recycled logo), reusable or home compostable by 2025.

‘‘Since 2009 we’ve reduced overall packaging across all products by nearly 50 per cent and are excited about this new way to present our Duchy Organic tomatoes to our customers.’’

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