LOOP, an online shopping platform that delivers brand-name groceries and household goods in reusable packaging, is committed to reducing plastic waste even if they suffer losses.
The online shopping platform started by US-based recycling company TerraCycle, has joined forces with grocery giant Loblaw Companies Ltd. and leading consumer goods companies to launch in the Toronto region of Canada.
Everyday essentials usually purchased in single-use containers will be available in refillable glass or metal containers and delivered in reusable tote bags.
When the item is finished, empty containers are placed back in a Loop tote, where they are picked up, sanitized, refilled and shipped out to customers again.
The delivery service, available through Carrefour in France, Kroger and Walgreens in the USA and Tesco in the UK aims to reduce single-use plastics and waste from household goods.
Loblaw’s senior vice-president of plastic waste reduction, Ian Gordon, said that the so-called ‘milkman model’ is a “great example where you look to the past and see a great opportunity to solve a problem.”
A survey commissioned by Kraft Heinz Canada found that 83 per cent of Canadians want less packaging on groceries, with 78 per cent wanting grocery products with zero-waste packaging.
“The Heinz ketchup bottle was already recyclable but now we’re moving one step forward to make it reusable,” said Bruno Keller, president of Kraft Heinz Canada.
“Loop is a platform for reuse where consumer product companies can create reusable versions of their products, and then retailers can then make those available to their consumers,” Tom Szaky, founder and CEO of TerraCycle and Loop.
Products being sold in refillable containers through Loop will cost the same as in stores, while the company is absorbing the cost so that it can make it available to customers.
Meanwhile, Loop is losing about a million dollars a month globally, while helping to address the world’s waste crisis, from ocean plastics to overflowing landfills, Szaky said.
Loop expects to suffer losses for at least another two years before it breaks even but Galen Weston, executive chairman of Loblaw, said in a statement that there is too much plastic waste in the environment and that the company is “part of the problem and must be part of the solution.”
The company has also said that it will be offering some of its best products, and monitoring consumer response to decide what to offer in the future.
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