Dutch organic supermarket chain Ekoplaza has opened the world’s first plastic-free aisle at one of its Amsterdam stores.
700 plastic-free items will be available in the aisle, including meats, chocolate, dairy, yogurt, snacks, as well as fresh fruit and vegetables.
Packaging for the products will be made from various bio-degradable materials and other recyclable materials such as metal, cardboard and glass.
Ekoplaza collaborated with environmental campaign group A Plastic Planet to introduce the aisle, and the supermarket claims it plans to introduce similar sections in all of its 74 stores by the end of 2018.
Chief executive of Ekoplaza Erik Does said: “We know that our customers are sick to death of products laden in layer after layer of thick plastic packaging.
“Plastic-free aisles are a really innovative way of testing the compostable biomaterials that offer a more environmentally friendly alternative to plastic packaging.”
The introduction of the aisle comes amid growing concerns about the impact of plastic packaging on the environment.
The European Union has announced that it plans to make all plastic packaging in member countries recyclable by 2030, and reduce the use of single-use plastics to combat this issue.
UK supermarkets have also made efforts to reduce plastic waste, as Waitrose and Iceland have announced plans to cut black plastic packaging from their own brand ranges, while other supermarkets such as Asda will stop offering single-use plastic bags by the end of the year.
Sian Sutherland, co-founder of A Plastic Planet added: “The introduction of the world’s first plastic-free aisle represents a landmark moment for the global fight against plastic pollution.
“For decades shoppers have been sold the lie that we can’t live without plastic in food and drink. A plastic-free aisle dispels all that.
“Finally we can see a future where the public have a choice about whether to buy plastic or plastic-free. Right now we have no choice.
“There is absolutely no logic in wrapping something as fleeting as food in something as indestructible as plastic.
“Plastic food and drink packaging remains useful for a matter of days yet remains a destructive presence on the earth for centuries afterwards.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2018
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