Waitrose has reported an “overwhelming customer response” to a trial in one of its stores where groceries are sold loose, prompting the supermarket to extend the scheme to several more branches as it gears up for a wider roll out.
Launched at one of the supermarket’s Oxfordshire stores in June, the Waitrose Unpacked concept has done away with all packaging across dozens of product lines, from fresh fruit and vegetables to pasta and couscous.
Greenpeace described the initiative as “genuinely bold” when it was introduced at the branch on Botley Road, in Oxford, this summer. And it appears locals have embraced the “pick-and-mix” style system in store too.
In a report published today by the supermarket, Waitrose announces that the pilot has enjoyed “phenomenal results”.
Retail expert Richard Hyman said the scheme represents “a commitment [to the environment] beyond simply stopping using plastic bags” and predicted the chain would roll out the concept more widely in the coming months.
“Clearly this is something [Waitrose] would eventually like to roll out across all its stores,” he said.
“Whether this can be replicated across the entire chain remains to be seen...but the initial reaction appears to be very positive,” he added.