ACS Sets Out Convenience Sector’s Commitment to Tackling Waste on World Environment Day

ACS is celebrating the work of the convenience sector in reducing waste and helping the environment on World Environment Day (June 5th).

As part of its commitment to helping retailers recycle and reduce the waste in their business, ACS is part of an initiative aimed at improving on-the-go recycling options in the centre of Leeds, where recycling reward machines, 'bubble-blowing' bins, and recycling collection bikes have been rolled out over the last few months. The 'Leeds by Example' campaign is aimed at providing consumers with a means of recycling plastic bottles, drinks cans, coffee cups, and other packaging from goods consumed while out on the streets or in public places.

At present, only 42 per cent of local authorities provide on-the-go recycling facilities in the UK. Leeds By Example, led by environmental charity Hubbub, brought together 23 major brands and other supporters including ACS for the initiative which launched in October 2018. More information about the Leeds by Example trial is available here:

ACS has also been helping retailers to reduce the number of plastic bags that are given out to customers. Since the introduction of a plastic bag charge in Wales in 2011, ACS has been calling for the whole of the UK to be included in mandatory charging for single use plastic bags, and has encouraged small retailers to introduce voluntary schemes in England after the Government initially excluded them from regulations. A video detailing how to charge voluntarily is available here:

Figures from the 2018 Local Shop Report show that 46% of independent retailers have introduced a voluntary charge for plastic bags, with further widespread support for universal charging.

The Government is currently considering how to introduce a deposit return scheme to recycle containers, which could include plastic, glass and metal. ACS is supportive of an effective, well designed scheme, but has raised concerns about the implications for retailers of having to take back containers manually, as well as any mandatory requirements for all retailers to take back containers.  DRS is one of the environmental issues that ACS explored at the 2018 Heart of the Community Conference, details of which are available here:

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “The convenience sector is taking huge strides to reduce waste through initiatives like voluntary plastic bag charging, sourcing products responsibly, and adapting ranges to reduce packaging. Convenience stores are embedded in their communities, with many retailers organising litter picks locally and going above and beyond to clean up their local area.  

“ACS is also committed to supporting innovation to reduce waste and help the environment, which is why we are backing environmental charities like Hubbub and working closely with Government and other stakeholders on what a well designed deposit return scheme could look like in the UK.”

More information about World Environment Day is available here:

This entry was posted by maxxadmin on Thu, 06/06/2019 - 10:14