Sainsbury’s to trial reverse plastic bottle vending machines

Sainsbury’s has become the latest UK supermarket to launch a trial of reverse plastic bottle vending machines in an effort to slash plastic waste.

The UK’s second largest supermarket announced on Twitter on Friday that it was set to trial its first bottle deposit vending machine at its Lincoln superstore, which will award customers 5p coupons for every plastic bottle or drinks can they deposit.

Customers can deposit up to 500 bottles and cans at a time, representing a maximum return of £25, as long as the items are available for purchase at Sainsbury’s.

Though the current trial is limited to its Lincoln store, Sainsbury’s said it plans to roll the machines out to four more stores in the coming weeks, and across more of its estate over the rest of the year.

Other retailers including Morrisons, Co-op and Iceland have already begun testing the machines as part of similar drives to reduce plastic waste.

READ MORE: Sainsbury’s to become UK’s first grocer to ditch loose-veg plastic bags

In January this year, Iceland announced that its plastic bottle reverse vending machines have earned shoppers more than £30,000 since it started piloting the scheme last year.

Last week Sainsbury’s also announced plans to become the first UK grocer to ditch plastic bags for loose fruit, veg and bakery products, replacing them with paper bags from September, reportedly saving around 1000 tonnes of plastic every year.

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