A zero-waste shopping service is launching in the UK to allow people to buy products from laundry detergent to ketchup in refillable packaging.
Loop, which aims to offer a modernised version of the “milkman from yesteryear”, is launching in partnership with Tesco, which will encourage its online customers to try out the scheme.
Via its www.loopstore.co.uk website, UK consumers will be able to get goods such as drinks, sauces, yogurt, shampoo, soaps and toothpaste in durable, reusable packaging.
Brands including Heinz Tomato Ketchup, Coca-Cola, Danone, Persil, Jackpot Peanut Butter, Brewdog and Nivea already or will soon have products in fully reusable packaging which can be returned, cleaned and refilled through the scheme.
Customers order online from the Loop website, paying a deposit fee on each piece of packaging which is fully refundable when the empty item is returned, and their goods are delivered by courier DPD in a reusable “tote” container.
After they have finished the products, customers can schedule a pick-up of their empty containers – which can be combined with the next delivery – or drop them off at one of DPD’s 2,500 collection points across the UK.
Loop said it will sort and professionally clean the product packaging to stringent health and safety standards so it can be refilled by the manufacturer.
Tesco is partnering with Loop, which is a spin-off of waste management company TerraCycle, to understand how a shopping service using recyclable packaging could work in the UK and will be encouraging online customers to test it out.
And the companies will be working together with a view to making products in reusable packaging available in Tesco stores as early as 2021.
Tesco Group chief executive Dave Lewis said: “Through our closed loop strategy of remove, reduce, re-use and recycle, Tesco has a clear ambition to reduce packaging.
“Our ground-breaking partnership with Loop has been designed to test a new way of helping customers use less plastic and explore the exciting potential of re-use.
“We will learn what works at scale as we develop plans with Loop to introduce reusable packaging into our business.”
Tom Szaky, founder and chief executive of Loop and TerraCycle, said: “Loop was designed from the ground up to reinvent the way we consume by learning from historic circular and sustainable models like the milkman from yesteryear while honouring the convenience afforded by our single-use consumption of today.
“Tesco is the perfect partner to bring Loop to retail in the UK due to its commitment to sustainability, in combating plastics waste, and its operational scale as the UK’s biggest grocery retailer.”
Jojo de Noronha, Kraft Heinz Northern Europe president, said the company is turning its “iconic Heinz” Tomato Ketchup brand green with the help of Loop.
“Here at Heinz we are very excited and proud to be a part of this revolutionary new scheme, and this new partnership goes one step further in our commitment to making meaningful progress towards helping the environment.”