Coles supermarket has announced that it will no longer sell single-use plastic tableware in all stores.
From July 21, 2021, the retail giant will withdraw all disposable cups, plates, bowls, straws and cutlery from sale at Coles supermarkets, Coles Express outlets and Coles Liquor stores.
It’s believed the move will divert 1.5 million kilograms worth of single-use plastic from landfill each year.
permarket says it will divert more than 1.5 million kilograms of plastic from landfill each year.
Coles CEO Steven Cain said the supermarket is committed to environmental leadership.
“Ensuring the sustainability of our business is essential to our future success,” Cain said.
“As a company, we already divert 79 per cent of our waste from landfill and have recycled more than 1 billion pieces of flexible plastic with the support of REDcycle and our customers, since 2011.”
Coles said the change has been overwhelmingly supported among customers, with a recent Coles survey showing 65 per cent of customers are concerned about the environmental impacts of single-use plastic tableware and prefer sustainable alternatives.
Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management Trevor Evans MP supported the move.
“The Morrison Government is on a mission to reduce waste going to landfill in Australia, and we applaud Coles’ initiative to stop selling single-use plastic tableware products,” Evans said.
“Every company that takes action to reduce problematic or unnecessary plastics, takes us one step closer towards a more sustainable Australia and is a win for our environment.”
It follows similar moves by ALDI and Woolworths aimed at reducing plastic waste.
In 2020 ALDI stopped selling single-use plastic tableware from all stores, while Woolworths stopped selling plastic straws in 2018.
Woolworths is also working to replace disposable plastic tableware with a range of sustainable alternatives.
*The phase-out across Coles Group outlets will be completed by 1 July 2021, with stores in South Australia phasing out the legislated single-use plastic tableware by 1 March 2021, in line with South Australian law.
“This important initiative will not only divert more than 1.5 million kilograms of plastic from landfill each year, it will also help our customers who are telling us they want to make more sustainable choices.