The Co-operative Food knows its onions on packaging

09/04/2012 (press release: OnlinePR) // The Co-operative Food

The Co-operative Food has switched the packaging on its own-brand onion range to a recyclable material, enabling 32 tonnes more packaging to be recycled per year.

Changing the packaging on own-brand onions from polypropylene to polythene allows the bags to be recycled, providing a more environmentally responsible way of disposing of the packaging, which would have otherwise been destined for landfill.

The change allows the onion packs to feature the industry-wide On-Pack Recycling Label – a move which was taken with the support of government organisation, WRAP, which promotes recycling and waste reduction in the UK.

Last year, The Co-operative recycled more than 2,921 tonnes of polythene, including plastic collected from recycling points at more than 1,000 of the retailer’s larger stores, and used it to produce bin bags and bags for life, which it replaces when worn out, free of charge.

Switching the onion range is the latest in a wider move by The Co-operative Food to make more of its fresh produce packaging recyclable. The efforts support the retailer’s wider target to divert the majority of operational waste from landfill, as part of The Co-operative’s ground-breaking Ethical Plan.

Iain Ferguson, Environment Manager, The Co-operative Food, said: “The Co-operative is leading the way in providing customers with recyclable packaging. We know our customers are keen to protect the environment and, in addition, we are also working to label all our recyclable product lines to make it as easy as possible for our customers to recycle.”

Marcus Gover, Director of Closed Loop Economy at WRAP, said: “WRAP welcomes every initiative from retailers and brand owners to encourage people to recycle more plastic films. So we are pleased to see The Co-operative taking this step to boost the recyclability of its onion packaging, and making it easier for consumers to recycle it by using the On-Pack Recycling Label.”

Additional Information:

Know Your Onions – Top 10 Onion Facts

• The word “onion” is derived from the Latin word, “unio”, meaning one.

• In Ancient Egypt, onions were considered to be an object of worship. They saw eternal life in the anatomy of the onion because of its circle-within-a-circle structure, and often buried them along with their Pharaohs.

• Onions are high in vitamin C, a good source of fibre, and are sodium, fat, and cholesterol free.

• An old wife’s tale says the thickness of an onion can forecast winter weather. An onion with a thin skin predicts a mild winter and a thick skin predicts a severe winter.

• Chopping an onion makes you cry because they contain sulphur, and this is released into the air when it’s cut and reacts with the moisture in your eyes.

• In Ancient Greece, athletes drank onion juice and rubbed onions onto their bodies before competing in the Olympics.

• Onions are low in calories, approx 40 kcals per 100g.

• Rubbing salt and vinegar into your hands after chopping gets rid of the smell.

• Onions are said to be an aphrodisiac.

• Onions were prescribed in the Middle Ages across Europe to alleviate headaches, snakebites, and hair loss.

Contact Information:

Adele Mandy

Assistant PR Manager – National, Food

The Co-operative Group

Tel: 07713 314 894

Email: adele.mandy@co-operative.coop

About The Co-operative

The Co-operative Group is the UK’s largest mutual business, owned not by private shareholders but by over six million consumers. It is the UK’s fifth biggest food retailer, the leading convenience store operator and a major financial services provider, operating The Co-operative Bank, Britannia and The Co-operative Insurance. Among its other businesses are the number one funeral services provider and Britain’s largest farming operation. As well as having clear financial and operational objectives, the Group has also set out its social and sustainability goals in its groundbreaking Ethical Plan, which specifies almost 50 commitments in these areas.

The Group operates 4,800 retail trading outlets, employs more than 106,000 people and has an annual turnover of more than £13bn.

The Co-operative Food is part of The Co-operative Group. They have a store in every single UK Postal area meaning Christmas food from the Co-operative Food is in easy reach of everyone and many can enjoy the wine offers available.