Foodstuffs innovation wins national award for waste reduction
Foodstuffs New Zealand's world-first recyclable
butchery trays have been named the country's top waste minimisation
initiative for 2016, at the Green Ribbon Awards in Wellington.
The kerbside-recyclable trays, which are being rolled
out nationwide and will be in use at all New World and PAK'nSAVE
stores by the end of July, were recognised for being an innovative,
sustainable solution to a environmental issue that has challenged
retailers for years.
Made of 50% recycled plastic, the trays themselves
can be put in customers' kerbside recycling bins. They will replace
the current trays that are made of non-recyclable polystyrene foam,
100 million of which end up in NZ landfills every year - equivalent
to 14 Olympic-size pools' worth of polystyrene.
Foodstuffs (NZ) Ltd Sustainability Manager, Mike
Sammons, who managed the project from conception to
commercialisation, alongside Alto Packaging, says the Green Ribbon
win is "great recognition for a great kiwi solution."
"It was a massive challenge finding a cost-efficient,
functional, sustainable solution," says Sammons. "But we also knew
the eventual pay-off would be worth it, in terms of the
"To now take home the top prize in the waste
reduction category makes that investment even more rewarding."
Foodstuffs (NZ) Ltd Managing Director, Steve
Anderson, says the company is thrilled by the win and what it means
for the environment, here and overseas.
"This accolade underscores Foodstuffs' long-standing
commitment to move our packaging towards being 100% recyclable for
our customers, either at kerbside or back at store," Anderson
Sammons says single-use packaging doesn't make
financial or environmental sense: "Going to the trouble of
manufacturing a product from a finite resource, then using it once
for a few days before relegating it to a landfill is simply
inefficient and irresponsible."
"The clear trays are highly sought-after for
recycling too," he says, "which will hopefully incentivise local
packaging manufacturers to invest in reprocessing post-consumer
packaging, thereby moving us closer to the 'holy grail' of closed
loop recycling in New Zealand."
Anderson says Foodstuffs has exclusivity on the tray
design for a limited period, after which it's expected Alto will
then supply many more retailers throughout New Zealand and the
"While we're immensely proud to have been recognised
here at home by the Green Ribbon Awards, the real prize will be
seeing these trays in use internationally in years to come."