16th June 2023: This week, Lidl introduces new packaging for its strawberry range, demonstrating its ongoing commitment to promote a circular economy. This industry-first packaging update will result in 9.3 tonnes of plastic, or the equivalent of 375,000 bottles, being prevented from entering the ocean in this Irish strawberry season. Together with Lidl’s fish packaging update announced last year, the retailer is on course to prevent 1 million plastic bottles from entering the ocean this year.
Once again leading the industry, Lidl's Deluxe Strawberries and 250g Strawberries will now be 100% recyclable and made using at least 30% Prevented Ocean Plastic (POP). Ocean bound plastic is plastic found within 50km (30 miles) of an ocean coastline or major waterway that feeds into the ocean.
Lidl has partnered with a number of Irish strawberry suppliers, including Kearns Fruit Farm in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, to introduce this innovative new packaging to the Irish market. This collaborative effort underscores Lidl's commitment to fostering a sustainable future and highlights the collective responsibility we share in combating plastic waste and promoting a circular economy.
In 2022, Lidl became the first retailer in Ireland to introduce POP packaging for its fresh fish products through its collaboration with Irish supplier, Keohane Seafoods. Significantly, this one initiative prevents the release of almost 19 tonnes of plastic into our oceans annually equating to 750,000 bottles.
The innovative design of Lidl’s new strawberry packaging not only provides protection but also allows for drainage of water, reducing the risk of spoilage. Furthermore, the use of a single material in the packaging enables easier recycling, as the punnet and bubble pad were made from two different materials before. Importantly, the new packaging does not affect the shelf life of the strawberries and customers can enjoy the freshest produce whilst also knowing their selecting a more sustainable choice by shopping at Lidl.
Speaking about the initiative, Alan Archibold, Senior Buyer at Lidl Ireland commented:
"By introducing POP packaging to our strawberry range, we are taking another significant step forward in our journey towards a more sustainable future. Our commitment to reducing plastic waste aligns with our vision to offer responsibly sourced products while safeguarding the health of our oceans. We’re delighted to once again partner with a longstanding Irish supplier, Kearns Fruit Farm, on this innovative initiative that is set to have real impact on our environment.”
Jimmy Kearns, Owner, Kearns Fruit Farm commented:
“We’re so proud to partner with Lidl and play our part in providing Irish consumers with innovative strawberry packaging that includes recycled ocean bound plastic – a first in the Irish retail market. We look forward to future collaboration with Lidl to further reduce environmental impact.”
With this packaging innovation, Lidl not only demonstrates its commitment to environmental stewardship but also empowers customers to make responsible choices. By selecting Lidl's strawberry range, shoppers are actively contributing to the crucial mission of protecting marine life.
Lidl's commitments to a circular economy goes beyond the strawberry range, aligning with its overarching goal that 100% of their plastic packaging will be designed for maximum recyclability and that 50% of their packaging will be made using recycled materials by 2025.