Iceland Foods has called on the retail and wider business sector to become more transparent in their reporting of plastic packaging.
The move has been backed by four of the most influential campaigners on the issue – Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, A Plastic Planet, and Surfers Against Sewage.
The call for transparency is also supported by the Environmental Investigation Agency, which together with Greenpeace produces an annual survey on plastic usage by supermarkets, and by Keep Britain Tidy and international development charity Tearfund.
Richard Walker, managing director of Iceland, and Silver winner in this year’s Global Good Awards Individual Leader category, said: “Our message is clear. Without transparency, and government enforced reduction targets, we will not be able to judge whether business actions are delivering real progress. That is why today Iceland is calling on retailers and other businesses to step up and commit to publishing their total plastic packaging transparently, including both own label and branded products. For several years now, businesses have been using incomplete information to represent the scale of their plastic packaging, their commitments to change, and the progress being made. We will all be better served by a more accurate and transparent picture on this issue.
“Increased recycling is important but won’t solve the issue on its own. Regulated commitments to reduce plastic pollution are also vital if we are to deliver positive progress in the face of the sheer scale of plastic making its way into the environment.”
Tony Bosworth, Friends of the Earth campaigner, said: “This initiative is an important development in the drive to slash plastic pollution. You can’t manage what you don’t measure. Many corporate ambitions for reducing plastic waste may sound impressive, but unless they are clear about how much they’re responsible for in the first place these can be fairly meaningless.
“Ministers must listen to the growing calls for serious action on the plastic crisis by ensuring that bold targets for reducing plastic pollution and waste are included in the Environment Bill.”
For further information on Iceland’s plastic consumption figures to date, visit sustainability.iceland.co.uk.