Tesco resealable salad bags help customers cut food waste

Shoppers are to be given a helping hand to reduce food waste thanks to British retailer Tesco’s new resealable private brand salad bags.

Salads are one of the UK’s most wasted foods by households, and figures show that Brits throw away around 37,000 tons from their homes each year – the equivalent of 178 million bags of salad.

The new bags have a sliding zip lock, similar to the ones used for family-sized cheese portions, to keep the salad from spilling out once it’s been opened.

The packaging is made from a thicker film than usual to help protect the leaves from getting damaged.

Tesco produce buyer manager Adam Hill:

“Over the last two years we’ve been working with our growers to develop new packaging which allows customers to return to their bags of salad over a number of days with very little hassle or fuss.

“We know many shoppers roll up their bagged salads after using them once and stick them at the back of their fridges where they are forgotten for days or even weeks.

“These new bags are made from stronger material to protect the leaves from getting scrunched up – so preventing them from going to waste.”

Tesco’s research found that:

  • Shoppers do not always buy bagged salads with a meal in mind which can lead to them being forgotten purchases
  • Current bags are not strong enough to protect leaves and do not seal so salads tend to spill out in the fridge
  • Shoppers believe that air going into a bag once its opened is “bad air” and want a way to stop this occurring

The move to launch the resealable salad bags has been welcomed by the Waste & Resources Action Program (WRAP) – a not-for-profit organization that works with governments, businesses and the public to promote waste reduction.

WRAP’s business programs director Steve Creed said:

“We commend Tesco for introducing a new resealable packaging format for their pre-prepared salads which will help in the fight to reduce household food waste.

“At present, nearly 40 per cent of lettuce and leafy salads bought by householders end up being thrown away in the home.”

The new Tesco salads in resealable bags are priced as follows Babyleaf spinach (240g) – £1.50; Iceberg lettuce (260g) – £1; Sweet and crunchy (370g) – £1; Babyleaf salad (140g) – £1.50.

The new packaging is part of Tesco’s ‘No Time For Food Waste’ campaign to tackle food waste wherever it occurs – from farm to fork.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.