UK - home improvement sector pledges to cut waste and packaging

30/09/2009 Return to news archive

Six of the UK's top DIY retailers and brands have signed an historic agreement to reduce packaging and waste to landfill, under a new voluntary industry initiative led by WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme).

Wickes, B&Q, Homebase, Argos, Focus and Henkel have agreed to work together for the first time to achieve a 15 per cent packaging reduction and a 50 per cent reduction in waste to landfill by the end of 2012, against a 2007 baseline. They will also look at ways of helping consumers to recycle more.

The launch of the new industry agreement comes hot on the heels of the launch of the Government's new UK Packaging Strategy, Making the Most of Packaging, which advocated the voluntary approach to deliver packaging optimisation.

The Home Improvement Sector Commitment is based on the successful Courtauld Commitment model. Through this, the grocery sector, with support from WRAP, has already eliminated packaging waste growth in the UK and aim to deliver absolute reductions in household packaging and food waste by 2010.

This new, ground-breaking commitment will focus on reducing packaging through improved design and dealing with problematic packaging and product areas. The aim will be to come up with alternatives which are less bulky, easier to open and easier to recycle. It will target improved packaging systems to reduce product damage and wider adoption of re-useable systems in the supply chain and for home deliveries.