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Local environment minister Ben Bradshaw last week voiced frustration at the slow rate of change in reducing unnecessary packaging at supermarkets. He called on consumers toleave excessive packaging at checkouts. Do you have any better ideas or should the Government legislate?


Excess packaging is a technical, cultural and legislative problem. Technically, it can be reduced by redesign and implementation of low-waste life cycles (biodegrading, recycling, take back). To kick-start this, supermarkets need justification from consumer demand and legislation. Consumers have not made the link between waste and their personal health, as with organic food, for example. Governments must legislate quickly and work with designers to educate consumers effectively.

Neil Tierney, Director, Lightweight Medical and Element 06

When was the last time Ben Bradshaw visited a supermarket and did the weekly shop? Today I visited a Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and Safeway, and, in most areas, they are making great advances in cutting out excessive packaging. The real issue is, what are they doing to make this recyclable? They should all get together and work on this with urgency. They could go back to dispensing milk ladled out by a jug, but, if Bradshaw wants more votes, let’s get him to cut out the waste from plastic-wrapped Sunday newspapers.

Glenn Tutssel, Executive creative director, Enterprise IG

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